G2G: “G2G is a happy band! We are celebratory humans and we like to sing about that”

Handmade collage by B.

Sydney’s G2G sound somewhere between the Raincoats and Kleenex. They’re an inviting listen of freewheeling riotous music inspired by their “mums” and “Dolly Parton”. Despite currently living in different parts of Australia they’re still keeping in touch and working on new ideas which, if we’re lucky will materialize into their first LP.

How did G2G come together?

GEORGIA: Well it happened pretty quickly. I had lots of – I wouldn’t call them demos – but phone recordings of strange melodies, and Greta had lots of ideas too so we spent a couple of afternoons in her studio fleshing these parts out. It was obvious that we needed to get Australia’s’ best bass player (Gel) involved to make the songs truly work… We probably had one rehearsal together before our first show, which was Paradise Daily’s Fourth Birthday Party.

GRETA: Georgia and I met at a Body Type show and Gel and I met randomly through a mutual friend. Neither were particularly memorable occasions, I think only brief introductions, but we all slowly grew on each other. That’s the way I think real best friendships happen.

GEL: Greta showed me some demos in the car once of two songs that her and Georgia had written and I loved them so much! Our first show we played for about 10 minutes and it was a very fun 10 minutes- we all got together lots after that and kept writing. And yeah I think so too Greta!

What is the band’s biggest inspiration?

GEL: Dolly Parton, Nicholas Cage, our mums!

GEORGIA: I think we all have a similar sense of humor, and I think we are a curious group… We have an A3 sheet that lives above Greta’s bed with all of the things we love. Dolly, Nicholas and “our mums” are definitely on that, also on that list: Dixie Chicks, Brian Eno, Leah Sales, Terry…

GEL: Yeah I think curious is a good word for us! Curiosity is a big driver I think for us all.

GRETA: I’m currently in isolation in Melbourne but if I had a photo of that piece of paper it would show you… our kindergarten teachers are on there too. Our pets. I think our biggest inspirations are the people (and animals) that made the biggest positive marks on our lives. G2G is a happy band! We are celebratory humans and we like to sing about that.

We found it!

FIG A: THE G2G BIBLE WITH A TOUCH OF GRETA NOW WIG.

Growing up, how did you discover music?

GEORGIA: Family. Perth’s’ 1080 radio station had a fair bit to do with what I discovered.

GEL: Also family. In primary school I played in a two person Delta “Goodrum” cover band with my friend Claudia. We played exclusively Delta [Goodrem]. I think maybe being given a Destiny’s Child CD for my birthday one year provided a gentle push toward discovering other music!

GRETA: The first CD I ever owned myself was Ali G’s single “Julie” which I used to spin the shit out of on my walkman. I think my godparents gave it to me. The first way I liked to discover music was by going to HMV in Hurstville and picking a random CD from the top 10 section. I was pretty gutted when it shut down.

When did you first realise you wanted to play music?

GEORGIA: I won a guitar from the local video shop at the age of eight after writing a paragraph on why I loved Josie and the Pussycats. That was the instigating event but I didn’t realise I wanted to make music until I was in my twenties.

GRETA: I always wanted to play music, I can’t really remember when I realised! I used to love playing my dad’s bass when I was small and then he bought me a little Casio keyboard and I would just press play on the demo songs and make my own words and dances up to them so probably then.

GEL: My Mum played in a few bands when I was young. I liked that there were often people over playing and it was normal for it to be noisy and lots of kids running around and it felt fun! I think I have always liked the idea of having music as a part of day to day life in a similar way.

G2G are from Sydney; what’s it like where you live?

GEORGIA: G2G was born in Sydney but at the moment I’m in Perth, Gel is in Wombarra and Greta is in Melbourne. So we are living all over. The sun sets over the ocean where I live.

GEL: Where I am it’s nice, extra isolated during this shutdown but there’s a very empty beach and lots of nice places to walk.

GRETA: I am from Hurstville, St George. It’s a quiet, suburban place. I live there with my mum, dad and my grandmother. We are a super close family and St George has many things to offer us. Paul’s has the best burgers, Tom Ugly’s bridge is the best fishing spot and Mr Chow’s is the best BBQ Pork.

You released your first song “No Kid No Angel” in June last year; what’s the song about? Was it the first song you wrote?

GEORGIA: Um, the anxiety and repetition of loss. How about that.      

GRETA: Yeah, that sounds about right G.

In January this year you released your first EP as a 7”; what’s your favourite song on it?

GEL: I think my favourite song on the EP is “Animated Satisfaction”. I like that it’s freewheeling and frantic but also kind of condensed.

GRETA: That’s so hard… Obviously I love all of the songs but I really love playing and listening to “Animated Satisfaction” too Gel. We sound tuff in the recording and it brings back really funny memories.

Are you currently working on anything?

GEORGIA: We are working on making a movie together, which is proving a little difficult as we are all in different states and self-isolating, but we are figuring it out. We also have a few songs we want to record so hopefully an album will happen when we are next together.

GEL: Sending each other phone recordings and lyrics and song ideas is something we’ve always done, so even though we’re in different places we’ve kept this up. There’s definitely an album there in our combined voice memos. 

GRETA: In conclusion, we’re working on staying in touch with each other, making sure we call, check in, Facetime where we can. We miss each other A LOT!

What’s the most interesting thing someone’s said to you about your music?

GEL: Someone once described G2G as “like a chainsaw to the face, if that chainsaw was made of nails and sharks.” I definitely appreciated the creativity of this depiction of us… haha!

What do you love most about making music?

GEORGIA: I love making music with Greta and Gel because it’s quite chaotic and intuitive and filled with feelings that I like being inside of and communicating.

GEL: Yeah, me too. Georgia and Greta are the best to make music with. I like the way we build on and run with each other’s ideas. Writing songs together is supportive and fun and honest, and that feels good.

GRETA: I love making music with Gel and Georgia because we laugh SO MUCH. And there’s an amazing sense of freedom that comes with writing with these two. Ideas are never shunned because nothing is lame or repetitive or shit. We embrace all of each other’s ideas and we just work really well together.

What are the bands, songs or albums you’re listening to right now?

GEORGIA: Solo Career and Greta now. The song “This Kiss” by Faith Hill and the song “This Is Not A Dream” by Dadamah. The Lydia Lunch podcast.

GRETA: Creedence Clearwater Revival, Burial, Brian Eno, The soundtrack to Animal Crossing.

GEL: I’ve been listening to More Fun In The New World by X heaps, somehow it sets the right kind of mood during this weird time of shutdown/ isolation! Also the song “No Romance” by The Fates, the new Primo! song “Machine”. And band Girls at Our Best! and my friend Mardi’s Country Christmas album.

Where are you happiest?

GEL: In the bath.

GEORGIA: In the bath with Gel and Greta.

GRETA: In the bath with Gel and Greta and Georgia.

Please check out: G2G bandcamp. G2G on Instagram.

Concrete Lawn on their forthcoming LP Aggregate: “Drums and bass are hench as fuck”

Handmade mixed-media collage by B.

Sydney punk band Concrete Lawn will be releasing their new LP Aggregate May 1st on Urge Records. They first came to our attention in 2018 when they put out a killer cassette tape, DEMO. We interviewed CL about the new forthcoming album, recorded, mixed, and mastered by Jono Boulet from Arse/Party Dozen.

How did you first discover punk?

CAMPBELL (guitar): I first discovered punk when I found The Stooges’ “Fun House” in my dad’ s CD pile when I was 14 and it blew me away from the moment I listened to it.

JACK (bass): Going to see shows at Black Wire Records (R.I.P).

What are some of your favourite punk records?

CAMPBELL: Some of my favourite albums are The Saints – Eternally Yours, Ausmuteants  – World In Handcuffs, Devo – Q: Are We Not Men?, Anaemic Boyfriends – Fake ID 7″, Radio Birdman – Radios Appear, The Cure – Boys Don’t Cry, Gee Tee – Live And Dangerous, MC5 – Kick Out The Jams, XTC – Drums And Wires, Gangajang – Sounds Of Then (I know it’s not punk but who cares!) and too many more to name.

JACK: All Bagged up by The Bags, as well as some of those early X records, also The Urinals. That Decline Of Western Civilisation doco really had a huge impact on me. Then also more angular stuff like No Trend was big to be honest, probably the only punk band I regularly listen to at home I think. In terms of locals: Nasho, Canine, Morte Lenta and Robber are my favourite punk bands.

MADDISON (vox): Can easily say Fuckheads by Gauze and Pick your King by Poison Idea but in terms of current punk/hc records, I would definitely say Binasa EP by Sial, Anxiety’s self-titled and Perfect Texture by Geld, mostly everything from Static Shock’s record label is simply sick. 

Photo by Dougal Gorman (courtesy of CL’s Insta).

Who or what made you think, ‘hey, I wanna make music!’?

JACK: Seeing small DIY bands and spaces and people doing things on their own terms, again, Black Wire Records; but also Paradise Daily Records, Sexy Romance, Dispossessed, Monster Mouse, Beat Disc, Sex Tourists, Pink Batts, No Refunds (remember those shows LOL?), Orion are all things that stick in my mind as like, things that made me want to do this. 

ALEX (drums): In high school a lot of my friends were in bands and I always wanted to do that. There was this show on at school like for the end of the year and I thought to myself, I could do that mad easy!

I know that everyone in the band grew up going to heaps of shows; what was the first show you went to?

CAMPBELL: First show I went and saw was AC/DC when I was about 15, it was pretty boring it was a bunch of 70 year old men on stage playing for 3 hours practically the same song. There was a heap of aggressive bikies there too LOL. But, the first proper show I saw was The Pinheads and some random indie bands. Pinheads pretty much blew the other bands out of the water with their wild spontaneous energy.

JACK: First show I ever went to was My Chemical Romance in 2007 and it is still the best show I’ve ever been to LOL.

MADDISON: For my 15th birthday, I got given my eldest sister’s ID. First time I officially used it was at the Lord Gladstone for this shit Violent Soho-like band. Got kicked out in the first 10 minutes LOL… maybe due to the fact that I was wearing a Grateful Dead tie-dye t-shirt, and purple gumboots.

You’ve about to release your new LP Aggregate; what’s your favourite thing about it?

CAMPBELL: The drum sound, that’s all I’m sayin’.

JACK: Drums sound great on the record, they often sound like break beats which is sick. Alex taught themselves drums via jazz I think, very cool.

ALEX: I like hearing how we’ve come together as artists, and how like everything has come together and it sounds tight.

MADDISON: Drums and bass are hench as fuck, especially in “Milk”.

You recorded with Jono from Arse; how did you come to working with him? What was it like working with him?

CAMPBELL: Jack just slid into his DMs that simple. Jono was super easy to work with and he was super patient with us, for example he sat down with me for like an hour to help me try and find a good guitar tone and he stayed back with Madz until late into the night doing vocal tracks.

JACK: Sent him a text message because we liked his recordings, that Top People EP [Third World Girls] is great.

MADDISON: Simply Jono’s chicken pillow, I want one.

What’s one of your fondest moments from recording?

CAMPBELL: Watching old blokes out of the studio window play lawn bowls, while we were trying to record.

JACK: I think I was really stressed about life stuff at that point so it was nice having three days or something to not really have to do real life things.

While writing for the record what kind of place where you writing from? What emotions were you tapping into?

JACK: Dissolution, boredom, hatred, I guess. Also, obligation, because people keep asking us to play shows LOL.

MADDISON: To be honest, this whole album has been written over a period of almost two years so I can’t remember what frame of mind I was in whilst writing the lyrics but probably anger/frustration LOL. It’s hard for those emotions not to arise as frequently as they do considering most of the population are clueless clowns.

What’s the title song “Aggregate” about?

MADDISON: Most of my lyrics touch on the issues of systemic oppression/abuse, although, this song in particular focuses on ecocide, land dispossession, and the lingering injustices of colonialism. Title itself is just a bunch of elements combined to form a solid. Needed in concrete mix I think IDK thought it was cute.

The cover art by Maxine Booker is beautiful; what was the idea behind it?

CAMPBELL: I’m not sure what the idea behind the art work is but, we all just thought the art work look really good. Sorry if that sounds super shallow but LOL.

JACK: Max is one of our dear friends and they made great art work what the fuck more do u want lad.

MADDISON: It’s a DIY artwork that evolved into an inverted wood block print. Concept surrounding the artwork is open to the audience’s interpretation.

Art by Maxine Booker.

What’s been one of the best shows you’ve ever played?

CAMPBELL: Playing at the Marrickville “Bowlo” early last year, it was super sweaty and it was a Sunday arvo so no one was being super serious.

JACK: My favourite live show was NAG NAG NAG 2019, we were playing wayyyy too late in the night and we just played super sloppy and I kept hitting Campbell with my bass. At some point he tried to hit me back and I tripped over the power cord for the whole stage!! I don’t really remember but it was nice to have fun in front of a crowd of serious punk people. This is may be contentious, though I think Mad wasn’t happy with that show LOL.

ALEX: I really liked the show we played with Pinch Points and Surfbort at the Croxton a couple months back. We played mad tight and I had met a bunch of people the night before and they came through it was lit.

Vid by Gummo.

Have you ever had an embarrassing moment on stage?

CAMPBELL: We were opening for Straight Arrows and playing a good set but then realising I had my fly undone throughout the whole entirety of the set.

JACK: I felt really sick one time on stage.

What’s one of the biggest challenges your band faces?

CAMPBELL: Old gronks!

JACK: Being organised enough to practice, coming up with interesting riffs, being treated as novelty teenagers by an aging scene of men in their 30s.

Besides music what are some things that are important to you?

CAMPBELL: Anti-gentrification.

JACK: Community and forms of care which don’t replicate broader systems of power.

ALEX: Not allowing wack shit to keep going on. I want to write plays one day.

MADDISON: DIY culture, solidarity, and my darling dog, Zeus.

Please check out: CONCRETE LAWN. CL on Facebook. CL on Instagram. Pre-order Aggregate on Urge Records.