In a city of bustling competition, Go Fever strikes gold when it comes to carving out a distinct space for themselves in Austin. Enveloped in a burgeoning indie scene, the band had a knack for making the right moves straight from the get-go, after the five-piece came to fruition last year. Raised in the Australian countryside, lead singer Acey Monaro grew up crafting bold lyrics and playing solo performances before moving permanently to Texas to form what is now the powerhouse act Go Fever, including members from exceptional local acts Sweet Spirit, Glass Grapes and Star Parks. Their debut album was released this past February, engineered and produced by Danny Reisch and mastered by Max Lorenzen. An earnest collection of cathartic bluesy and surf-pop melodies from start to finish, Go Fever leaves us all with an incessant aural itch we just can’t seem to get enough of. For those of you in or near Austin, Texas, be sure to head on over to Swan Dive this Friday for our upcoming issue release party and to catch the band’s energetic performance! We took a moment to ask Acey Monaro some questions about the indie music communities she’s grown up in, her inspiration behind their latest music video and what else Go Fever have in store for the year.
ANON: How did you meet your husband and Go Fever’s bassist, Benjamin Burdick? How did the rest of the band come together?
Acey Monaro: I was in Nashville for a few nights in 2011 and I met him and his old band, The Preservation, after they played a show at The 5 Spot there. Then I was working at SXSW the following year and we, shall we say, “reconnected” (wink wink, nudge nudge, say no more).
ANON: What differences have you noticed between the indie music communities in Sydney, Australia and Austin, Texas? In what ways have you seen the music scene change in Austin since you moved here in 2013?
AM: Sydney is a huge city, with a higher density population than LA. But it’s also an extremely diverse city, multiculturally. So even though it’s this huge sprawling beast, the indie community isn’t as big as it is here. The Sydney music scene in general is still recovering from the installation of pokie machines (that’s slot machines to you Americans) in pubs in the 80’s, which all but destroyed live music, because pub owners realized they could make more money from gambling than from hosting bands. Venues are always opening and closing there, as they are here, because of noise complaints and gentrification. Melbourne’s scene is much more comparable in size to Austin’s.
Local radio plays an important role in Sydney, too, but the DJs at community stations (we don’t have college radio like it exists here) can make their own playlists, so you don’t have that thing like you do in Austin where a few popular local bands are singled out by a Music Director and you hear those band’s songs on every show and every other band in the city gets virtually ignored. It’s easier to get airplay and support on Australian community radio, which is very important, I think.
I don’t think the Austin scene has changed that drastically since 2103, except that there seems to be more and more bands, and venues have closed down, re-opened, changed hands. I work at Cheer Up Charlies, and Ben used to work there when it was Club De Ville. Sometimes change is for the better (Cheer Ups rules! Such a great incubator for new local music), but nostalgia can cloud judgment.
Where did the inspiration behind your Folk Zero music video come from?
When I first presented Zack Scott with the idea, I mentioned The X-Files, The Twilight Zone and John Waters. He’s a comic nut (and I collect all the 70’s underground comics you can see in the vid), so he took those elements and added the awesome superhero twist (pun intended). He specializes in horror stuff, and it turned out so dope. He’s amazing!
What albums have been on your playlist as of late?
This past couple of weeks I’ve been digging Do Hollywood by The Lemon Twigs, Tom T Hall’s For The People In The Last Hard Town, The Preatures’ Blue Planet Eyes (amazing Australian band, this record was produced by Jim Eno, everyone should listen!!), Foxygen’s Hang, and the self-titled album by this rad Chicana riot grrrl/punk rock band from San Antonio called Fea. Not gonna lie, I’ve also been flogging Margaritaville in the car. On repeat. Obnoxiously loud at traffic lights.
When you’re not busy writing and performing what else keeps you occupied?
Well, I should be practicing guitar because I suck. But I have the attention span of a gnat and I always end up putting it down and writing. I’m a half arsed illustrator and I try to draw as much as I can in my free time. I work a bunch of different jobs right now so there doesn’t seem to be much of that. Ben and I try and get out of town and go camping whenever we both have a night off work and gigging, too!
What plans does Go Fever have on their radar for the rest of 2017?
We’re about to start working on a bunch of new songs that will eventually be on a record. Playing less locally and touring the West Coast in June, and possibly the mid-west in October and maybe Australia in December. We’ll see!