Progress Report

Progress Report: The Go! Team

NAME: The Go! Team
PROGRESS REPORT: Recording the followup to 2007’s Proof Of Youth at Brighton Electric Studios in Brighton.

“Some people think of music as self-expression, where you’re pouring things out. I think of it as mining,” says Go! Team’s leader Ian Parton. From The Go! Team’s past records, a bright collage of grainy samples, playground double-dares, and manic guitars, his mining sounds like a lot of digging through record bins and messing around with the pieces on his laptop. But that’s not how Go! Team songs start out, especially for this record. For one, Parton says the emphasis will be on “singing and melody” here more than on the last two records. And his mining is a lot like that of other Progress Report songwriter — recording every idea onto tape, or on his cell phone, then seeing which ones stick with him past the initial stage. “I hoard ideas,” he says. “Someone once described it like a Ray Mears-style water filtration system. I do the same with samples — I stick ‘em down and then focus on the best ones. This time I’ve been mostly fitting them to a song I’ve written rather than using it as a basis for a song.” Thus many of Parton’s songs begin on acoustic guitar, played in his kitchen.

The new album will be “less peppy,” says Parton, but with more quick changes and flailing guitar that “aim to confuse.” He’s written 17 songs that revolve around this, amongst other ideas. The most interesting is his idea of making “schizo music,” a single song that can switch from sounding like a home demo to “big and widescreen,” or could even change from one set of instruments to another from one minute to next — almost like tuning into the same song across different radio stations playing different genres. “I’ve never really heard music that flips in fidelity within the same song, but the challenge is to make it flow like a song should,” Parton says. “Its hard.”

Of course Parton is still mining records and samples. He’s been interested in the soundtrack and musique concrète-influenced releases from UK label Ghost Box, and he’s planning on recording a cover of “I’m Not Satisfied,” a reverb-coated single from ’60s duo Betty And Karen. The Go! Team will still feature vocalists Ninja and Kaori Tsuchida. Parton’s brother Gareth will once again act as producer, but Parton hasn’t finalized his dream list of guest artists yet. He’s hoping for a good mix of accents and vocal styles — another part of his plan to make schizo music. Otherwise Parton wants to keep things sounding the same, while finding just the right sound. “Even though it’s album three and the tradition is to mature and all that bullshit I have no desire to clean up the sound. It feels like the perfect song is out there somewhere, but you have to dig for it.”


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Tags: The Go! Team