We’re convinced that our lives would be so much better if Goalkeeper would just sing about them. The trio of frontman/bassist Ryan Beebe, guitarist Marc Juliano and drummer Cody Ritchie have an amazing ability to make the saddest things OK. On “Happy,” the boys reenact a first band practice scenario for laughs. The video (produced by Casey Allen and Tim Sczcesniak) helps undercut the song’s sadder lyrics about the end of a relationship.
“Happy” is from Goalkeeper’s upcoming LP, Life In Slow Motion, slated for release in September on Lost Music Collective. The band were assisted in the recording by some notable pop-punk personalities. Producer Kevin Mahoney (Hit The Lights, Joywave) oversaw the proceedings. Cartel frontman Will Pugh engineered the release, and Neck Deep’s Seb Barlow handled all the mixing and mastering of the final tracks. By the looks of it, we’re thinking Goalkeeper will be jumping to the head of your streaming queue later this summer.
Once science crushes COVID-19, we expect to see more Goalkeeper shirts out in the world. Juliano spoke with AltPress about his band’s propensity to make sadness fun, the byproducts of working with the above-mentioned pop-punk A-team and how the genre will survive anything. As long as it wears a mask.
Whose spackled lair did Goalkeeper set up in to shoot the video? Is it as small as I think it is?
MARC JULIANO: That was Cody’s attic. We wanted somewhere colorful and weird, and it just so happens [that] Cody had this in his house. Funny how things work out that way. It was probably even smaller than you saw. We couldn’t even use the drum set we use live because it couldn’t fit through the door.
Goalkeeper keep things light and speedy, even when there’s a degree of sadness involved. What were you trying to achieve with “Happy”? There’s the “first-ever band practice” reminder parallelling the first day of school (the “parents” dropping their “son” off) and the excitement of meeting new people. But then the lyrics allude to another situation that’s completely different altogether.
Well, the whole video is just a band’s first practice. We had to be dramatic and have the lead singer get dropped off by his mom and dad. Who in a band hasn’t been in that situation at least once? [Laughs.] Honestly, though, we just wanted to shoot something we thought was cool and ridiculous. Obviously, we were overdramatic with each person’s role in the video, but that’s what makes it fun.
“Happy” is just an upbeat song about knowing when a relationship is coming to an end. Before it totally implodes, you end it because you just want to see the other person happy—knowing that both you and your partner will be happier with someone else. We wanted to take this energetic song and pair it with a funny, ridiculous video.
What’s the state of punk in Philly and eastern Pennsylvania these days? Can it still thrive without shows?
Philly has quite a few pop-punk bands, such as our friends in Crashing, Midfield and FRND CRCL. Philly also has a strong indie scene with bands similar to Modern Baseball, Dryjacket and newer Wonder Years music. The nice thing is that most shows end up being a mixed genre show, which is always cool because you can play in front of new people every time. These shows are also good ways to see how your music comes across to fans and bands in multiple genres as well. They give you new ideas and inspirations for future songs.
As far as the scene thriving without shows, I think any scene can thrive without shows because it falls on the bands to be creative and engaging. Bands who are still active and trying to be unique and creative to connect with fans will always thrive, regardless of the situation. Plus, we all come from the punk scene, which historically does things in different, creative ways. Punk rock and underground music in general will be just fine. Just wear a mask!
You’ve got some highly regarded participants involved on Life In Slow Motion. What were the things that Pugh, Barlow and Mahoney saw in your band that made them want to sign on to your project?
You’ll have to ask them what they saw in us because we have no idea! [Laughs.] We were just grateful to get to work with them and they saw something in us they believed in.Kevin produced our last EP [Bad Times Don’t Last] and after that experience, we knew we wanted to work with him again. He’s so intelligent and musically creative, he really did help us grow and learn to be better songwriters and musicians. As hands on as he is, he does let us work stuff out so we can learn and become better individually and as a band. When we were looking for a new engineer, Kevin actually brought up the idea of Will Pugh. We immediately said yes because Cartel are legendary! Not only is he a great producer too, he just knew how to set up gear in cool ways to get a great sound and elevate the band sonically.
With Seb, we were looking for someone to mix and master the EP. We knew his work and just reached out. We were so excited when he got back to us saying how he wanted to work with us. He took two hours out of his day just to chat with us, hear our direction and just vibe. His mixes blew us away and from the first round. We definitely had a powerhouse team and couldn’t have been happier–no pun intended–for the opportunity to work with them on Life In Slow Motion.
So after Mother Nature stops hating us, would you rather play a show or just be at one?
100% play a show. We had [to cancel] so many shows and tour dates because of the pandemic. Which really made us scared with the new EP because we can’t get out there to promote it. We were supposed to be direct support for Bowling For Soup in March, which got pushed to this September, and as of July 20, it just got moved to Sept. 24, 2021. Luckily, everyone seems to be really engaged and excited for the new music, which is amazing. We couldn’t have better fans, friends and family supporting us. Hopefully things turn around soon and we can get back to playing and enjoying shows safely. We say again, wear a mask!
Check out Goalkeeper’s first day of band practice in “Happy” below.