Australian Pop Punk Duo Play A Night In LA

Gooch Palms

Gooch Palms plays at Cafe Nela Aug. 29

Gooch Palms are a pop-punk-garage duo from New Castle, Australia – made up of singer/guitarist Leroy Macqueen and drummer/singer Kat Friend. They are legends in their hometown and are ready to hit the US with their catchy-as-hell music. The Gooch Palms are set to perform a set at the Café Nela in LA on Aug. 29.

They describe their music as caveman pop with different mixed styles. “It’s a bloody mixed bag,” states the duo. They have huge influences such as The Ramones, KISS, The Stooges and many others – they are ready to take their music out of Australia and electrify the world, which they definitely will. They are already a household name in their home country. Plus their minimal stage set-up is really attracting their audience.

OCCG recently caught up with The Gooch Palms to talk about their upcoming tour and the start of their duo.

OCCG: How did the both of you meet and create The Gooch Palms or “Da Goochies” as they say in Australia?
Kat: We met the way most people used to meet back before the world of Internet dating, at a bar while we were really drunk. We’ve been a couple for many years but only started playing together as a band a few years ago.

Leroy: I wanted to start a band but no one was really working out. A friend of ours had left a couple of drums laying around the house so I made Kat start bashing on them (The Gories were my main influence there). I always intended on getting a full band but we started getting gigs and people really liked the minimal set up so we just left it and it seems to be working for us!

OCCG: How would you describe your music to someone who has never heard of you guys? – Is there a song of yours you’d recommend someone to listen to first?
Lo-fi shit-pop. If we were a good band we’d be a pop band, but it’s a shittier version of pop. Sometimes bordering on punk. Or maybe primitive pop? Caveman pop! Some songs are doo-woppy. Indie punk. It’s a bloody mixed bag mate!
All our songs are a bit different from each other but all sound like us. I would recommend listening to ALL OF THEM!

OCCG: Who are some of your musical influences individually and as a duo?
Kat: We both pretty much like the same things music wise. The Ramones, The Stooges, GG Allin’s poppier stuff. Actually, anything that is catchy and has a killer hook. That may be some obscure power pop song from the 70’s or Ke$ha. If it’s catchy, we like it!

Leroy: My dad is friends with the drummer from XTC (he lives in Newcastle, Australia for some reason) so I grew up listening to them. So they’ve been a big influence on me. Them and Devo are great. The Ramones are no 1 though, or KISS! The Gories are a huge influence; they’ve given us the courage to be as minimal as we are. Like Kat said, pop music is our guilty pleasure too! But Aussie bands like The Victims, The Scientists, Radio Birdman, The Saints, The Sunnyboys, Midnight Oil and The Loved Ones are all big influences.

OCCG: What are people’s initial responses when they hear your music for the first time?
Kat: People seem to really like it. We’ve been told our songs are earworms that get stuck in your head. That’s what we wanna hear! The reaction to SEEING us live for the first time however is always amusing. Dropped jaws, covered eyes, laughing, smiling are what we often see looking back at us from the stage. People don’t usually know what they are even looking at but by a few songs in they’re down with what we’re doing!

OCCG: How excited are you guys to be going on tour here in the states?
Kat: REALLY EXCITED!!! We cannot wait! We’ve played with a lot of great American bands in Australia and are really looking forward to finally coming over there and playing to new audiences. It’s been a dream of ours to tour the States. Nothing quite beats living out your dreams!

OCCG: Is there a certain city on the tour you guys are most excited about?
Kat: We’re equally as excited about every city. We’ve been to the US on holidays before so we’re excited to visit the cities we haven’t been before and excited about returning to the one’s we have! We’re playing a run of shows with Real Numbers from Minneapolis. That will be fun, we played with them here in Australia and they are great guys.

OCCG: What are your favorite songs to perform live?
Leroy: Well here in Aus there are a few songs that the crowd knows every word and they sing so loud it doesn’t matter if my mic stand gets knocked over as everyone is screaming the words at the top of their lungs. They are my fav to perform live. I also like singing the ballads like Don’t Cry and You.
Kat: Yep, crowd singing songs win. It’s crazy!