Alternative faves had a humble start
COMO KARNIVOOL lead guitarist Drew Goddard has some advice for prospective musicians - sacrifice, better yourself and play lots of gigs.
The band just celebrated 10 years since the release of their popular debut album Themata, touring the country to thousands of adoring alternative music fans.
Even though they have gained a loyal worldwide following over the past decade, the talented guitarist is quick to downplay their popularity.
“If you say the name Karnivool, people often don’t know who we are,” Goddard said.
“Most people know of Birds of Tokyo but they don’t know lead singer, Ian Kenny, is the same singer in our band.”
The 33-year-old musician is currently immersing himself in the band’s small but heavily amplified studio in Bayswater writing Karnviool’s fourth album.
While the music fraternity considers him somewhat of a guitar hero, Goddard said his musical abilities had small beginnings.
“I started liking the same songs as everyone like John Farnham and R.E.M, then mum and dad made me to go piano lessons, but it wasn’t until I heard Nirvana’s Smells Like Teen Spirit at home in Como that the bug bit me,” he said.
“I went to the same school as Ian (Collier Primary School) and that’s how we met.”
Goddard joined a covers band with his older brother Paul, and Kenny in 1996, playing pop songs by bands such as the Bay City Rollers and the Kinks.
“It was when I met Ian that he started introducing me to bands like Slayer, Sepultura and Nirvana, that really flipped the switch for me,” he said.
“We formed a band playing cover songs with Ian singing, my brother playing guitar and me on drums - one of our major gigs was playing at Collier Primary School’s 50th anniversary.”
It was during this period Goddard totally immersed himself in music.
“I started dressing grungy and I threw my tennis racket and cricket bat away and I wanted to play guitar and drums and it was basically in high school where Karnivool started,” he said.
“I started as the bass player, then I started writing songs and we got a new bass player and a new drummer.”
The current line-up was completed some years later when second guitarist Mark Hosking joined the band.
Karnivool have now released three albums, and Goddard said material for a new album, due sometime next year, sounded promising.
The band’s biggest crowds to date, outside the Big Day Out, have been in Moscow and India, where they drew 9000 people.
But he said fame came at a cost.
“The only problem with being in a band is the money is bad, people don’t buy records anymore. I am lucky I can make a living from it, it can be very hard to sustain yourself,” he said.
Founding member and guitarist Drew Goddard.
Karnivool ham it up during some down time on a tour of India.