Toronto outfit Goodbye Honolulu first came up on my radar after the internet exploded when Selena Gomez was spotted at one of their shows. As it turns out, this wasn’t just some sort of gimmicky fluke — the truth is, there are few bands more purely infectious in their songwriting and stage presence than Goodbye Honolulu. The band’s forthcoming debut self-titled album is due out in October, and was produced by Ben Cook (Fucked Up, No Warning, Young Guv) and Tony Price (US Girls, Slim Twig, Ice Cream, Michael Rault).
Ahead of the release, they sat down to talk Spinal Tap, The Clash, and Jimmy John’s in the latest Indie Mixtape 20 Q&A.
What are four words you would use to describe your music?
Jacob, Fox, Max & Emmett.
It’s 2050 and the world hasn’t ended and people are still listening to your music. How would you like it to be remembered?
We’d like to still be excited about creating music, to have it be exciting for the listener as well as ourselves and to have it be ever changing. We’d like to continue to blur the lines between musical genres and just keep experimenting.
What’s your favorite city in the world to perform?
Our hometown Toronto of course, but we’ve had some amazing times in Washington, DC, and New York is awesome and has an amazing energy to it.
Who’s the person who has most inspired your work, and why?
I don’t think we’d be able to choose just one artist. But any friends we’ve ever played a show with or have worked with closely have always inspired us greatly. I would also add each other… since day one we’ve all been extremely influenced by each other’s writing, style and general outlook on the world. We are family and are all super close.
Where did you eat the best meal of your life?
Jimmy John’s have been an integral part of touring life and have been great friends to us out on the road. Jimmy John’s 4 Life.
What album do you know every word to?
Probably a Beatles record or like any early 2000’s music.
What was the best concert you’ve ever attended?
Best concert we’ve attended would probably be any of the shows we played with Hinds, when we toured with them. Their live shows are so much fun, so positive and just such a party. They are legends forever. Endless love & respect to them.
What is the best outfit for performing and why?
A suit with some speeders on.
Who’s your favorite person to follow on Twitter and/or Instagram?
Social Media is fake.
What’s your most frequently played song in the van on tour?
Our most played tour van song is definitely just listening to hours of creepy podcasts.
What’s the last thing you Googled?
What album makes for the perfect gift?
The Clash – London Calling
Where’s the weirdest place you’ve ever crashed while on tour?
Haunted Air Bnb in Gatineau, Quebec.
What’s the story behind your first or favorite tattoo?
Fox has a Goodbye Honolulu tattoo & Emmett has Rock & Roll on each knee cap, given to him by Fox. Those ones are special.
What artists keep you from flipping the channel on the radio?
We love anything Broncho puts out. They’re a super cool band.
What’s the nicest thing anyone has ever done for you?
That’s a big question.
What’s one piece of advice you’d go back in time to give to your 18-year-old self?
Just keep going. Don’t give up, even when it feels overwhelming and difficult. Just keep pushing through and believe in your art or whatever you’re pursuing.
What’s the last show you went to?
Our last show we went to was the last show we played on tour with The Beaches in our hometown of Toronto at The Danforth Music Hall in February of 2020, two weeks before the world went into lockdown.
What movie can you not resist watching when it’s on TV?
What would you cook if Obama were coming to your house for dinner?
We’d get him some Jimmy John’s or maybe some Gyros’ from Messinis in Toronto.
Goodbye Honolulu is out October 1. Pre-order it here.