Gold Fields set to return to Karova Lounge with their mature sound and independent attitude

Subscribe to Forte Magazine

Gold Fields set to return to Karova Lounge with their mature sound and independent attitude

After winning a triple j competition to play at 2013’s Falls Festival, Gold Fields attained a massive following immediately in their career. However, with the next two years consisting of touring and playing festivals worldwide, all off the bat of their acclaimed debut LP ‘Black Sun,’ the success came at a cost.

“Around 2015, we were all pretty exhausted and were pretty happy to come back to Melbourne and sort our lives out and get a bit of a home base, just taking time to not focus on the band,” says the band’s charismatic drummer Ryan D’Sylva.

“After our first album, we toured so heavily for the better part of two to three years. One year we did over 100 shows in a couple of different countries and that definitely starts to take its toll from an exhaustion point of view,” he says, “There was a moment where we didn’t even think we would do a second record, it wasn’t completely ruled out but it was very much up in the air. But at the same time through habit, we were all chipping away at writing some songs and then we all ended up coming together again about a year ago and realised we were all in a good place to go ahead on a second album.”

With many issues being the factor in the bands break, a large part was influenced by the corporate juggernaut of the music industry.

“When you start as a band you have full creative control… When money starts coming into it and labels are giving you an advance, there is definitely voices in your ear saying ‘you can get on this radio station’ or ‘you could be on this commercial’,” he says, “It all just starts to erode the feelings of writing music for yourself. That started to disenchant us a little bit, because what we were writing, which we didn’t end up releasing, just didn’t feel right, it didn’t excite us. It got to a point when we really did need a break to step back from labels and write music independently.”

With the members of the band experiencing new found joys in life such as marriage and parenthood over the course of their break, their sophomore album is tackled with a much more mature sound.

“We hadn’t really found a sound that we were 100 per cent comfortable with when we recorded ‘Black Sun’. We were still in that experimental stage where you are trying heaps of new sounds so I don’t think we had found a style that felt 100 per cent natural,” D’Sylva says.

“This time around each sound is a little bit more carefully considered. The penny finally dropped about stripping everything back and finding out what the song is at the core; what’s driving the song; is it drums, guitars or is it ambience or it could even be silence. ‘Black Sun’ was very loud and full on so we thought we would strip it back a bit for this release, but stylistically it’s the same band.

“We also wanted to make it sound like a live show. After the first album we had heaps of people come along to the show and say they loved the show and bought the record, and they wouldn’t say they didn’t like the record, but they’d say things like ‘I want to see you live again’ or ‘I don’t get it, it’s so different to what’s on the record’,” he explains, “So we wanted to try and capture the energy of a live show. All of the drum tracks are live and unedited as was everything. If something was loose or slightly out of time we would just roll with it, so it’s a lot less perfect sounding. I feel so many people strive for clarity and perfection in their music that it kind of looses that haze of imperfections that old music has. We really tried to step away from such a robotic stale sound that we thought was a little bit there on the first record.”

After a two year hiatus, Gold Fields delivered a sold out set earlier this year as part of Sydney’s ‘Vivid Live’ shows, and will be making their way home for a headline set for 13th Birthday Party of the esteemed venue Karova Lounge, which D’Sylva says is held close to the hearts of Gold Fields members.

“Internally within the band, Karova has been there since the very beginning, Vin and Mark played their first gig ever at Karova back when they were about 13. It’s Karova’s 13th birthday and it pretty much goes back with us for that long as well,” he says.

“When they asked us to play the birthday we were originally unsure because we didn’t have much going on but it now kind of works out perfectly as one of those preliminary shows before bringing new music out. With that being said though, we are bringing all of our lighting and visual components from the Vivid Live shows so it will be really interesting to try and recreate that in an intimate and historical venue like Karova. It’ll hopefully be something different for the Karova regulars!”

When & Where: Karova Lounge, Ballarat – July 14

Karova will be continuing the celebrations on Saturday July 15, as will another line up of artists. Tickets via

Written by Alex Callan