GOOD TOUCH- SEATTLE, WA
Here is another installment of In Effect’s FRESH BLOOD where we shine some light on up and coming bands as well as ones that are doing good things that may be flying under the radar. GOOD TOUCH from Seattle play this thrashy skate punk style that is melodic and hard and should appeal to both the Fat Wreck/Epitaph crowd as well as those into more traditional style hardcore. Their debut is a self-titled 8 song jam recently pressed on to 12” vinyl from the fine folks over at Coin Toss Records as part of a joint release with Snatchee Records. Interview conducted in early August. Graphics by: Bas Spierings.
Seattle Washington’s GOOD TOUCH started in late 2013/early 2014 and was started as a side project to the band Crutches. Good Touch is: Jason, drums… Wade, guitar… Adrien, vocals… and Brian, bass. Besides Crutches the members of Good Touch have been in: Marginal Way, Koozbane, Section One, Up Side Out, Three Found Dead, The Telly Savalas’, Six Feet Away, and Land of Wolves who Brian and Wade still currently play with. At the time of this interview the band has played 13 live shows and their lone release is their 8 song self-titled album which can be found on most online streaming services and on 12” vinyl through CoinToss Records and Snatchee Records.
IE: What’s up guys? They say first impressions are everything and with Good Touch those first impressions for me were "fun skate band" and "play really fast punk music". What people, bands, and or skaters do you guys credit for making Good Touch the band you are today? What are your influences both from a skate aspect and a musical aspect?
Jason: My biggest musical influences are Good Riddance, Propagandhi, Strung Out, Descendents, Bad Religion, Rise Against, etc. Basically, all the really technical bands off of Fat Wreck and Epitaph from back in the day. I also got a lot of inspiration from metal bands like Slayer, Mastodon, Unearth, etc. The first cover song I ever learned was “Seasons In The Abyss” by Slayer back when I was about 15 years old. Steve Caballero was a huge influence for me for skateboarding. Between being one of the best skaters back in the day as well as a guitarist for The Faction. I even got to see him play guitar with Pennywise at Warped Tour back in the mid 90’s. He played “Bro Hymn” with them to end their set.
Wade: I think the biggest influences for me have been the similarities between skateboarding and punk music. Mainly that they both encourage people to be unapologetically themselves. They both encourage getting out there and being creative and bad ass, to challenge yourself and don't be afraid to think big. But most importantly: do it your way and make it your own, and be real with yourself. For bands I would personally site influences like Minor Threat, NoFX, Pennywise, Suicidal Tendencies, Lagwagon, Pulley, Millencolin, 88 Fingers Louie, The Beastie Boys. For skaters I would site Rodney Mullen, the dude is a really positive force and ingeniously creative. Watching him skate, or even just talk about skating, is inspiring to me. Same with Bob Burnquist, always thinking bigger and really creatively. He was also on an episode of Bill Nye, the Science Guy haha. Also Tom Penny, not only is he legendarily talented, but he does it all his way. That dude has been an inspiration to me for other more personal reasons as well.
Adrien: For me, I wanted to go back to my roots with this band. From the origins of skate rock with bands like The Faction, McRad, Kirk And The Jerks, Sub Society, Los Olvidados and Free Beer, Drunk Injuns to the 90's punk sounds of bands Like Fury 66, Screw 32, Good Riddance, 88 Fingers Louie, Krupted Peasant Farmerz, Propagandhi, Vision, Jughead's Revenge. Also hardcore bands like American Nightmare and Comeback Kid inspire us a bit. As far as skateboarders go? John Cardiel, Matt Hensley, Ron Allen, Tony Trujillo, Lucas Miller, Aaron Deeter, Todd Congelliere, to name a few.
Brian: I was raised on the Boston hardcore and street punk scene such as the Bruisers, Blood For Blood, For The Worse, Showcase Showdown, Ducky Boys, 30 Seconds Over Tokyo and the early days of the Dropkicks and like any punk kid my age the Epitaph, Lookout and Fat bands. Skateboarding hasn’t been a huge part of my personal life for a long time but always has gone hand in hand with playing punk rock and a lot of close friends have been heavily involved my whole life which means I’ve played on top of a lot of skate ramps from Boston to Montreal and Vermont to NYC… Seattle to the Bay.
IE: Your self-titled record has 8 songs and I am guessing that not all of them have skate related topics. What kinds of topics are you taking on lyrically besides the obvious?
Adrien: Two songs are skate related, from a personal perspective living in a city known for rain and holding out for dry days and bombing hills (no longboards), etc. The rest are personal political. In the modern age of "fake news" and the current political climate, it leaves us with a lot to chew on and write about.
IE: You originally put those 8 songs up on your Bandcamp back in September of 2017 and now Cointoss Records and Snatchee Records are putting it out on 12" vinyl. Was the initial plan just to have it on Bandcamp only or were there plans for vinyl all along?
Wade: Vinyl was an inevitability, but there was not immediate concern. I really just wanted to get it out there and make it available for people to listen to.
Adrien: Yeah, we were going to release it on vinyl with or without labels, but we are happy how it all came together. Indy at Coin Toss Records expressed interest in releasing some stuff for Crutches but the band was breaking up at the time and when we put up the Good Touch Bandcamp page Indy hit us up. I reached out to Andro at Snatchee Records to see if he would be interested in doing it as a split release between Coin Toss, Snatchee and Don't Sleep Ink (my little skate company) and that was it. Coin Toss also has or had fingerboards up for sale on their site as well! Ya don't see that everyday.
IE: Although those 8 songs have been online for almost a year you are in a unique situation to follow up the self-titled record with new music pretty fast. To many of us these are brand new songs as it was only just recently that there has been more of a public push from the labels involved as well as the release of the music videos. How far along are you with a potential follow up release?
Jason: We have a couple of songs that are just about ready to go right now and at least a few more that are blueprints of how they will be when we’re done with them. We tend to take our time writing new music because we’re all picky perfectionists and we usually don’t move on to a new song until the one before it is perfected. We are making great progress this summer with writing though, so hopefully we’ll be back in the studio by the end of the year.
Wade: We have a couple new songs already, and I have been writing a handful of others. Just staying focused on forward progression.
Adrien: Planning on recording by winter if writing keeps the pace it's going, not sure how many songs but aiming for six to start.
Brian: Being older fellas we have to make the time to play in our busy lives but we are all really hungry to keep progressing and writing better and faster material. Our next release may be a split a comp or our own record. We will just see how we feel about the new batch of songs and which way the wind blows.
IE: Where does the cover art on the record come from? Where did you find it?
Adrien: The cover photo is from a Trash Talk show, the kid came out of the mosh pit limping, my friend Marshall and I asked if he was OK. He said that he was fine, then he lifted his shoe to show us why he was limping and that's what we saw. The kid danced his shoe off the sole, haha. I take a lot of skate photos (@dontsleepink on IG) and the back cover photo is from one of our events at the Marginal Way Skate Park, with local ripper Phil Hansen (Lib Tech Skateboards). I did the layout as well.
CLICK BELOW TO WATCH THE "ONE HUNDRED YEARS" MUSIC VIDEO BY GOOD TOUCH
IE: You made videos for the songs “All Together” which is a live set type of video and then also one for “One Hundred Years” which is a mix of live set with footage from a local skate park. Can you tell us more about the making of the videos, especially from the skate park angle? Where is the park located, how did the filming go and any other info/back stories from the day? Where was the live footage from? It looks like the same live footage made it into both videos.
Wade: That skateboarding footage was taken at Marginal Way Skate Park, south of downtown Seattle. It's an annual event called Cinco De Margo. There was a best trick competition, tacos, a raffle, a bunch of bands. Super fun. For the “One Hundred Years” video the live footage of the band was from a couple of different shows. Jazz Bones in Tacoma, WA. The Valley in Tacoma, WA. And the Cinco De Margo show at Marginal Way. We had a lot of help with both videos from our talented friend Doug Reimer (Head Honcho, Phantom Racer, and Bridge City Sessions), who did the video edit and lots of the filming. That video of “All Together” was all Doug, he filmed that set, edited the footage. He hit me up and was like "Hey I think you guys played that song the exact speed of the record. Wanna video?" and I said yes. I think that was pretty much that… haha.
Brian: First off shout out to my dog and best friend Marlowe for the cameo in ”One Hundred Years”. Second shout out to my life in Black and White for letting me use their bass at the Jazz Bones show because my brothers in Good Touch accidentally forgot mine when I was coming to the show straight from work. Sick videos Doug! Thanks my man.
Adrien: Our set was during best trick in the video. Doug's the man. Shout out to my beautiful girlfriend Danicia for filming a bunch of the live footage. Click HERE to watch the "All Together" music video.
IE: When and where was the first Good Touch show and what do you recall about that day and the show? Who else played?
Jason: August 5th, 2017 at the Dead Baby Downhill in Georgetown (South Seattle). I think we did alright that day. The sound was weird because we were under a low bridge playing outdoors in the middle of a street at a big festival, but the sound guys did a good job making sure we could hear everything on stage. There were a lot of people there. At least a few hundred at the time we played and we got a pretty good response from them.
Wade: It's an event that is essentially a street party for a downhill bicycle race that ends in Georgetown, a neighborhood in south Seattle. The streets are all closed down and there are a few stages, bike ramps and dudes hucking backflips and shit. There's lots of food and drinks, tons of people and just a great time in general. There were a ton of bands that played that day/night. I remember Success played. They came and watched us right before they played on a different stage. Shout out Success! We played second on a stage in the middle of the street, under a bridge to a few hundred people, most of which were probably in line for beers haha. We did have a good crowd that showed up to see us though, and I got good feedback from quite a few people.
IE: Where does the name Good Touch come from? Any meaning behind it?
Wade: Well when Adrien and I first came up with the idea for the project. We were talking about how much we missed the fast melodic punk with a positive message, and it kind of stemmed from that initial concept.
Adrien: I used to stage manage a venue downtown and at the end of the night my friend Chet and I used to make up band names, usually ridiculous names like Dyno Clit, haha. Anyways, one night Chet said "How about "show me on the doll? You know like Good Touch Bad Touch" I stopped him and said I'm taking that name and using it. "Show me on the doll?" he said. "Nah, Good Touch, no one wants the Bad Touch, haha"...
IE: Adrien, you had a serious car accident awhile back which almost cost you your life. Did this accident stunt the forming or growing of this band and have you fully recovered from the accident or are there things that you are just going to have to live with?
Wade: I'll leave that direct question for Adrien. However, it's relevant to include that was not the only bump in the road for Good Touch. So right as Adrien was getting back on a mic and still mending from the crash, this was February 2016, I cut my left index finger in half due to a work accident and required surgery and physical therapy. That definitely put the project on hold, which super sucked after just getting Adrien back. Oddly enough it was not the first serious hand injury haha. Stories for another time though.
Adrien: On January 4th, 2015 I was in a life altering accident when I made the decision to get into a car with someone that was intoxicated. He refused to pull over, only to speed up and crash us into a pole. We were in an old truck that was lowered and had no middle seat belts on the seat. I flew out the windshield and my friend Alex rode out with me holding on to the flesh of my back, landing on top of me. I knocked out a few teeth and broke a handful in half. I broke all of my ribs, but two, in multiple places. Fractured my left scapula, fractured my left cheek bone, fractured tip of right shoulder, lacerations down my left shin plus more. It set me back in life, but I had a good circle of people to count on for help. As soon as I could walk I started physical therapy. I listened to my doctors and physical therapist and followed their notes to the letter and then some. It helps to do so. As soon as I was able to start singing I did, basically treated it as a form of physical therapy since I had so many ribs broken, and it helped!
Jason: Between Adrien’s wreck and Wade’s injury we probably lost about a year and a half of time as a complete band. Wade, Brian and I kept playing every week during Adrien’s recovery to make sure the songs stayed solid though. I think it took him about eight or nine months to get to the point where he could sing again, and about a year until he could sing the whole set confidently. After that we set a recording date (which we had originally set before Adrien’s car wreck) and shortly after Wade ended up severing a tendon in his index finger of his fret hand that needed surgery to repair and put us out probably another 6 months before he was able to get full range of motion back in that hand.
IE: What’s the rest of 2018 got in store for Good Touch?
Wade: Keeping that momentum with writing, and playing a bunch of rad shows with a bunch of rad bands!
Adrien: Write another batch of songs and record ‘em, hopefully get down to the Bay Area this winter and play some shows. Record release show is August 17th at The Kraken (our favorite place to play in Seattle) with Slashers (NYC skate rock), Burn Burn Burn and Mables Marbles, looking forward to that one! More to come. Follow us on IG for updates and fun stuff at @goodtouchsea & @dontsleepink
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