The Echo Presents
Goon LP Release Party
Draag, Kevin, & Special Guest
1822 W. Sunset Blvd
The Echoplex is located below The Echo, enter through the alley at 1154 Glendale Blvd
Los Angeles, CA, 90026
This event is 18 and over
While Goon was making their debut LP, Heaven is Humming, frontman Kenny Becker
underwent an operation. The purpose was to treat a sinus condition that chronically debilitates
his sense of smell and taste, ultimately draining his senses at large, including his hearing. And
though that operation was a success, the nature of his condition means the results are only
temporary; he has to consider going back under the knife in recurring intervals in order to
repeatedly clear things up again.
“That’s the thing, it’ll always grow back,” Becker says. “They’re just polyps—it’s not cancer,
but it’s sort of similar in that they just grow back and nobody knows why.”
It’s as frustrating and debilitating as it sounds, but Becker prefers not to wallow in some kind of
tortured-artist trope; it’s not the anguish of the condition that drives him to make music. Rather,
he’s driven by the times when he’s freed from it.
“I always find a lot of encouragement in the fact that, like someone like Van Gogh, I’m able to
be productive in the times that I’m not sick,” he explains. “People like to romanticize the periods
in which Van Gogh was having a bad time, but it was actually because he was sick that he would
go outside and see a cherry-blossom tree and just be struck by its beauty. It would make him
realize, ‘This might be the last time I see this, because I don’t know when I’m gonna have this
snatched away from me again.’”
Written in these periods of health and optimism, Heaven is Humming has been a long time
coming. Three years coming, to be exact: singer/guitarist/songwriter Becker, singer/guitarist
Drew Eccleston, bassist Caleb Wicker, and drummer Christian Koons started work on the album
in the summer of 2016, right around the time Goon’s debut EP Dusk of Punk came ripping in
from the Los Angeles sky, spilling from the brim with monster riffs and deep hooks. After
spending some initial time in the studio with Chris Lynch and Adam Rasmussen of Gardens &
Villa in their space in the Frogtown neighborhood of LA, the first Goon LP could have easily
been rushed out. But instead the band chose to get it just right.
“I knew I wanted it to be around ten songs long, but I wanted there to be more than ten songs to
choose from, you know?” Becker explains. “What that led to was this phase of recording lots of
softer songs that were creations from my apartment. Two of them are on the
record—‘Snoqualmie’ and ‘CCLL,’ which are respectively the songs that end each side of the
record—and that period of exploration actually brought together all of the songs that ended up
becoming our second EP.”
That second EP—Happy Omen—was released at the end of 2017, on its own a substantial work,
crafted out of prospective full-length material that felt like it belonged as its own thing. It also
marked Goon’s arrival to Partisan Records, with the EP’s creation serving the added benefit of
allowing all the different pieces of Heaven is Humming, a post-grunge behemoth of an album, to
mesh together in the way the band had been waiting for.
“The initial seed of an idea was to make a full-band record—not a solo bedroom thing, which is
really all Goon had been up until that point—and I think that idea persisted throughout,” Becker
says. “I thought to myself, ‘This will be the rock album,’ for lack of a better way of describing it.
‘This will be either our Pablo Honey or our The Bends.’” But through meticulous revisions, that
big studio sound morphed into something of a homegrown hybrid beast: “I enjoy the fact that the
really heavy ‘F Jam’ and the really quiet ‘Snoqualmie’ exist on the same record. The whole thing
is loud and hits really hard, but it feels like it actually takes you places. To me it actually doesn’t
feel super cohesive, which I kind of like about it. It’s not just ten or eleven hard-hitting rock
Heaven is Humming is indeed weird in its fearless abandon, but it’s also comforting and familiar
at the same time, taking the sounds of foundational groups like Pixies and Boards of Canada and
contextualizing them through a modern lens, placing Goon alongside contemporaries like Forth
Wanderers, METZ, Young Jesus, and Partisan label-mates Dilly Dally. Becker croons like
Michael Stipe one minute and snarls like Frank Black the next, but you never lose the sense of
who these four guys are making a beautiful racket right in the here and now.
“When I listen to the record, I can’t help but hear the last three years,” Becker considers of a
transformative time period in which he himself got engaged and drummer Koons had his first
child. “The fact that they call it an ‘album,’ as in a ‘photo album’—it’s a documentation. Usually
what people mean by that in the musical sense is that you went into the studio for a week and a
half and you documented exactly where you were in that pinpointed moment. So this was like
that, but for a chapter—a huge chapter. The album has been a crazy journey of recording in
many different places, re-recording a lot of it at my own apartment, and really just not knowing
when to stop. But I’m grateful for what it led to.”
Are you still looking for a female vocalist? I am a guitarist as well as keyboard, ukulele, saxophone.
Re: looking for a female vocalist/guitaris (Shoegazy Project) (Los Angeles)
September 11, 2013 at 12:21am
Yes definitely! All those instruments would be a really nice addition. Have you played in a band before??
& Special Guest
$10 Advance / $12 Day of Show
- Sorry, there are currently no upcoming events.