We Can't Win is the thrilling new single from Australian teen trio The Goon Sax, which is taken from their forthcoming album We're Not Talking, due out on Wichita on 14 September. Having toured
Europe with Frankie Cosmos and played a sold-out show at London's Sebright Arms in May, they return to the UK in September and October, with shows in Glasgow, Leeds and Birmingham plus a London show
at The Garage on 16 October.
Gloriously catchy with a triumphantly satisfying hooks their album encapsulates their brand of awkwardly transcendent guitar pop. It is taken to another level with a flourish of horns and strings, not to mention the inspired addition of a cowbell as a lead instrument.
Louis Forster from the band said of the song and video;
This song is about learning to live with yourself and accepting that everyone's impulses seem irrational to someone else. It's also about realising that love is at odds with the rest of your life and admitting defeat. head hung. We were listening to a lot of ESG and Liquid Liquid around that time so the song ended up kind of dancy! All the melody to this song was just really funny to me. We laughed a lot, particularly when writing the part for the chorus but then the words were very earnest because there was a lot going on that I couldn't really push aside to write about something else. "I'm gonna see my baby And it make me feel moody" would probably have done the trick.
Freshly signed to Wichita Recordings, Australian teen trio The Goon Sax announce a brand new album, We're Not Talking, due out on 14 September worldwide - Pre-order link here. They will be heading to Europe for shows at the end of May supporting Frankie Cosmos, including a date at Gorilla in Manchester on 28 May as well as their own headline show at London’s Sebright Arms on 29 May, before heading off for their first US tour in June.
They share the first single, “She Knows”, which marries sublime indiepop with frenetic, scratchy post-punk. The song is full of surprising angles and jagged sounds to create a perfectly awkward pop gem.
Taking the lead on this track is James Harrison, who explains further: "She Knows has become a very fast song, which took us a lot of practice to be able to finally hit and strum our instruments fast enough, with a lot of string breaking. I hope it makes people energetic and excited to listen to, it’s a song about losing hope, stubbornness and heartache. I’m not sure if it’s our saddest song, but maybe if you lock yourself in your room for a couple of days and only listen to it you might not feel so happy, it is also okay if you feel happy to this song! Even better!!!"
The Goon Sax are James Harrison, Louis Forster and Riley Jones from Brisbane, Australia. Still in high school when they made their first album Up To Anything in 2016, their brand of awkwardly transcendent teenage guitar pop took them into end of year lists for BBC 6Music, Billboard and Rough Trade, and earned them raves from the Guardian, Pitchfork, Spin, Uncut, Rolling Stone and elsewhere. According to Metacritic,Up To Anything was the 8th best-reviewed debut album anywhere in the world in 2016.
The Goon Sax toured UK and Europe twice on that record, played shows with Whitney, US Girls, Twerps and Teenage Fanclub, graduated school, and then turned their focus to album number two. They flew to Melbourne to record with James Cecil and Cameron Bird, respectively former/current members of Architecture In Helsinki.
New album We're Not Talking shows how much can change between the ages of 17 and 19. It's a record that takes the enthusiasms of youth and twists them into darker, more sophisticated shapes. Relationships are now laced with hesitation, remorse, misunderstanding and ultimately compassion. Lines like, "When the bus went past your house and past your stop my eyes filled with tears" and "I’ve got a few things above my bed but it feels so empty, I’ve got spaces to fill and we're not talking", are quite simply heartbreaking.
Drummer Riley Jones really comes to the fore here, joining Louis and James in singing lead and writing songs for the first time, making the band the musical equivalent of an equilateral triangle (the strongest shape in physics). After the album was recorded, Louis spent some time in a freezing Berlin apartment, but they are now all back in Australia, and keeping busy playing shows with Angel Olsen, Perfume Genius and Protomartyr.
Delivering brilliantly human and brutally honest vignettes of adolescent angst, The Goon Sax brim with personality, charm and heart-wrenching honesty. We’re Not Talking is a record made by restless artists, defying expectations as if hardly noticing, and its complexity makes We're Not Talking even more of a marvel.