Meet Baby Godzilla, Nottingham’s answer to ultimate heavy punk rock, or as they prefer to call it “general extreme noise”. Receiving reviews that hail nothing but overwhelming positivity, the four-piece are creating a memorable name for themselves.
Inspired by rock legends Nirvana and compared to the likes of Pulled Apart By Horses and The Chariot, Baby Godzilla have progressed both musically and in performance style to produce a live atmosphere hard to compete with. This speaks for itself and resembles the raw passion and enthusiasm that the quartet clearly encompasses in their musical lives.
Already Heard caught up with vocalist/guitarist Matt Reynolds to talk early years, influences and their most memorable shows.
Already Heard: could you introduce yourself and your role in Baby Godzilla?
Baby Godzilla: I’m Matt, 22, Leo, and I play guitar, shout and sing for Baby Godzilla.
AH: How did the band start out?
Baby Godzilla: Originally we started playing in the living room of mine and Tom’s (drums) old house. The place was pretty dilapidated and joined at both sides to other houses with families living in them that probably/definitely hated us (with good reason). We had next no furniture or stuff, just our amps and drums crammed into this living space. We threw together a few songs and came out with our first EP ‘NPAG.’ We weren’t really sure what we were musically at this point and as we started gigging more and more our sound started to change and our shows got wilder. We started to take things more seriously and Jonny joined the band and that takes us up to about now. (We were later evicted from the house due to it being in such a state of disrepair).
AH: How would you describe your sound and who would you compare it too?
Baby Godzilla: Our sound is loud and thrashy with spots of gypsy southern hick influence thrown in. It generally sounds like four men playing broken instruments because all of our gear is completely stuffed. On one hand we get compared to Pulled Apart By Horses quite a lot, but on the other we have been likened to the Chariot. We love both of those bands but I’m not sure it’s an accurate comparison; perhaps if all of our stuff worked we’d sound more like them.
AH: Are there any bands that have influenced your sound?
Baby Godzilla: I listen to lots of stuff I’m really influenced by early blues stuff like Son House and Robert Johnson so that tends to come across a little in what I play. We’re all also huge Nirvana fans, in terms of their attitude towards music and performing I don’t think there’s a band that’s influenced us more than them.
AH: What has been your most memorable show?
Baby Godzilla: There have been quite a few really fun ones; we try to play every show like it’s our last because there’s every chance that one of us will end up hurting ourselves to the point where we may never play again. One that stands out for me was home show we played last year; our close friend Rob turned his clubnight into an indoor festival called Rufest, it was held in this ridiculously small club that was meant to hold something like 110 people, but there were more like 150 crammed in plus bands, it got pretty messy (in a good way).
There’s also a band night held in Mansfield (mine and Tom’s hometown) called Clubfist that we played and it was incredible. The atmosphere there was really cool; you can tell the people that go are really appreciative to have live music in their town. It’s really positive for the music scene that a night like that exists.
AH: What is a typical Baby Godzilla show like?
Baby Godzilla: It’s hard to say really, it’s different every night but generally one constant is sweat, there is always lots of sweat, sometimes blood. At one show on our last tour we accidentally started a fire.
AH: You’ve recently released the mini album ‘Oche.’ How did the album come together and what should listeners know about it?
Baby Godzilla: ‘OCHE’ came together as the result of what we’ve been writing over the last year of gigging. I’m really happy with it because definitively it is our own sound that we have developed from playing together constantly; after playing live relentlessly we kind of realised that we wanted to capture the energy of our live sound for our next release and I think that’s exactly what ‘OCHE’ does. It’s a pretty relentless record and we recorded the whole thing live over two days.
AH: Which song from the album defines Baby Godzilla’s style?
Baby Godzilla: Perhaps ‘At The Oche,’ it’s only about a minute long but it’s kind of like a sharp succinct burst of sound that warns you about what’s to come over the rest of the record.
AH: There are some great venues in Nottingham, including Rock City, Rescue Rooms and Bodega. Where is your favourite venue to play in your home city?
Baby Godzilla: We are lucky to have some great venues in Nottingham, a lot of our more independent venues have unfortunately closed down. However the Chameleon is one of our city’s hidden gems, it’s a fantastic venue that’s above an arts cafe (which just happens to be on top of a card shop), the room is tiny, but it has a P.A. that belongs in a venue 4 times it size at least. To anyone that wants to play in Nottingham, get a gig at the Chameleon, it rocks!
AH: Are there any notable bands from the area we should be checking out?
Baby Godzilla: Hot Japanese Girl, Pilgrim Fathers, You Slut!, Ulysses Storm, Knife Cutter, Without Maps, With Silent Eyes and that’s barely scratching the surface there are some really great bands in Notts at the moment.
AH: Anything else in store for the band?
Baby Godzilla: We absolutely can’t wait to get back out to Europe, we’ll be focusing mainly on Germany and Poland; they always treat us really well out there. We should be back in the studio working on a few new bits and pieces in summer too. We’re also all growing beards.
AH: Any final words?
Baby Godzilla: Support unsigned music. Try to go to at least a gig a month, it only costs the price of a pint to get in and you could end up meeting some great people and discovering some brilliant music. Be curious!
‘OCHE’ by Baby Godzilla is available now on I’m Not From London. (Purchase on iTunes)
Words by Hannah Gillicker (@HannahGillicker)