GOBI
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GOBI

Austin, Texas, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2006 | SELF

Austin, Texas, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2006
Band EDM Indie

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Jul
25
GOBI @ Stubb's BBQ

Austin, Texas, United States

Austin, Texas, United States

Jul
17
GOBI @ Lola's Saloon Sixth

Fort Worth, Texas, United States

Fort Worth, Texas, United States

Jun
29
GOBI @ The Mint

Los Angeles, California, United States

Los Angeles, California, United States

This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos

Music

Press


For the last couple of weeks, I’ve had a copy of Austin electro dance band GOBI‘s new album, Gold On Black Ice–and it’s addicting. As always, GOBI brings a unique take on dance music that fuses elements of trance, hip hop, dubstep, house, and rock together to create an addictive blend that will get you out of your seat.

To me, GOBI does a great job at building a setting that stick throughout the entire album. With Poltergeist Arcade, the band took us on a journey through space. Built on lush synthscapes, a driving beat, and waves of bass, Gold On Black Ice takes the listener through an 80s arcade-fueled trip around a city at night. Just when you think the song is going one way or starts to get too comfortable in one genre, GOBI turns the corner and runs a red light. It’s like someone stole Knight Rider’s Kitt and took him out on the town for a night full of hookers, champagne, and blow; Spy Hunter if it was composed by M83; Depeche Mode’s Some Great Reward remade by gangsters after taking ecstasy and listening to Paul Oakenfold all night; or Daddy DJ recording a europop song in East LA.

Here’s a look at a couple of my favorite songs on the album:

Born to Dance is a classic GOBI track. It’s got an irresistible beat, some early 80s arcade sounds, and playful lyrics that name check some of pop culture’s finest. They’ve been playing it out for awhile, and it really whips the crowd into a frenzy. And how can you resist these lyrics:

“It’s like I’m born to dance, Michael Jackson. I got that big love, Bill Paxton. I’m on my knees yelling, ‘Darling please,’ Eric Clapton.”

Listen to Born To Dance here.

Pale Moonlight reminds me of beautiful Eurodance music from the late 90s and early 2000s. Full of uplifting vocals and splashes of blue chords, it opens with deep bass drums and claps rising to a driving build. Suddenly, a ghostly filtered female voice sings, “don’t worry. It’ll be alright. I’ll be waiting. Feel the light.” Then the car starts flying into the heavens. Just when you think it can’t get any better, there’s a drop. This song is super addicting.

Serenity starts off with some cosmic hip hop that crescendos into an epic, cinematic anthem. The breaks remind me of something from a Lil Wayne track. With elements of dub and the arcade sounds, it’s gonna get your ass shaking.

The album doesn’t come out until September, but you can pick up a hard copy THIS SATURDAY at Stubb’s during GOBI’s Gold On Black Ice release party. Zeale will be in the house, so look for some fun freestyle collabs.
- Chris Lynn - Republic of Austin


I wonder if The Stones crowd got a special track picked out beforehand just for them. I wonder if Coachella was told that there aren't many crowds left in the world like them. I wonder how many other show have real B-girls puttin' down freezes right next to an elderly couple dancing cheek to cheek. I wonder this because Z-Trip, the man who was once named best DJ in the world, the founder of a genre, the unpretentious champion of all styles of music, the headliner of festivals and performer for crowds that have at times neared half a million people, played at The Belmont in Austin on July 6, and each and every one of these things happened, and more. I don't say this lightly, but I'd be skeptical that there was ever a crowd that received the man more openly, or that there was anywhere in the country that was experiencing a better show that Friday night.

The crowd, which had a median age probably closer to 30 than 25 and was dressed nicely, yet casually, entered the venue slowly. This made the audience for opening dance-music-meets-rap act GOBI rather small, but it was a fun bunch, ready to start the night off right. GOBI started playing just about when night started really setting in, and their neatly looped synth melodies made for a great way to gradually get the energy going in the place. GOBI is two guys, one of whom controls most of the instrumental bits on a laptop, a guitar and a MIDI controller, and the other who mostly raps over the poppy-dark Euro-techno inspired beats, but who also sometimes slams on a tom-cymbal drum set and sometimes adds to the beats with a pair of stacked synths.

The sound of their instrumentals involved a lot of what I call loops of bloops and driving rhythms, reminding me variously of Trentemoller, a darker Mylo and some of Radiohead's post-Kid A stuff. On top of that smart, fun instrumental base, frontman Chuco Phil laid down his Kweli-via-De la Rocha flow, which sounded to me like it had been influenced by rock-rap, but had managed to eliminate all of the douchey-ness that often accompanies that genre. The Austin-proud duo was a hell of a lot of fun, especially because they were obviously passionate about what they were doing, despite the crowd being relatively small near the beginning of their set. I especially dug their track "Texas Sun," which used their arpeggiated, 8-bit influenced sound to great effect and featured vocals that gave a heart-felt shout out to the track's namesake.
- Red River Noise


With its cramped corners and bevy of tables crowding the back end of the room, a show at Lambert's already feels a little more chaotic than it really should. So when you throw in a group like GOBI, the raved-up and wild trio that drops electrofunk in the vein of Ghostland Observatory but reels in a drummer for even more insanity, the dance floor gets rightfully thrown into a high-flying mosh pit of euphoria.
- Austin Music Weekly


With its cramped corners and bevy of tables crowding the back end of the room, a show at Lambert's already feels a little more chaotic than it really should. So when you throw in a group like GOBI, the raved-up and wild trio that drops electrofunk in the vein of Ghostland Observatory but reels in a drummer for even more insanity, the dance floor gets rightfully thrown into a high-flying mosh pit of euphoria. - Austin Music Weekly


Gobi

San Marcos is an unlikely location for a dance-rock breeding ground, but in recent years, the sleepy college town has turned out more worthwhile dance acts than winning football teams. Part of that has to do with the lasting legacy of the sadly defunct Clap!Clap!, whose neon-lit exuberance and synth-streaked party-starters live on in direct spin-offs Missions and Love At 20, as well as acts like Zlam Dunk and Gobi. Though the latter band now calls Austin home, its Excitebike synthesizers and lyrics about feeling "amazing-mazing" took root in San Marcos' sweat-streaked house-show circuit. - The Onion / The A.V. club


Gobi

San Marcos is an unlikely location for a dance-rock breeding ground, but in recent years, the sleepy college town has turned out more worthwhile dance acts than winning football teams. Part of that has to do with the lasting legacy of the sadly defunct Clap!Clap!, whose neon-lit exuberance and synth-streaked party-starters live on in direct spin-offs Missions and Love At 20, as well as acts like Zlam Dunk and Gobi. Though the latter band now calls Austin home, its Excitebike synthesizers and lyrics about feeling "amazing-mazing" took root in San Marcos' sweat-streaked house-show circuit. - The Onion / The A.V. club


Gobi

San Marcos is an unlikely location for a dance-rock breeding ground, but in recent years, the sleepy college town has turned out more worthwhile dance acts than winning football teams. Part of that has to do with the lasting legacy of the sadly defunct Clap!Clap!, whose neon-lit exuberance and synth-streaked party-starters live on in direct spin-offs Missions and Love At 20, as well as acts like Zlam Dunk and Gobi. Though the latter band now calls Austin home, its Excitebike synthesizers and lyrics about feeling "amazing-mazing" took root in San Marcos' sweat-streaked house-show circuit. - The Onion / The A.V. club



GOBI
Justin Dillon and Phil Arciniega first met in El Paso years ago. In 2006, they met Matthew Kevin Dunn in San Marcos. The follow- ing year they moved to Austin and brought their musical virtuosity with them in the form of GOBI. Their blend of electronic, pounding music has won them scores of fans. Phil shared a little about the music.
What musicians or bands have influenced your sound? Like most people who love mu- sic, we have been influenced by a wide range of artists. From classical to jazz, Chuck Berry to Chuck D, Dylan to Disco, Deftones to DJs. We tend to love it all. A good song is a good song.
What is the process for cre- ating your songs? We usually create the skeleton to a song, which almost always consists of a melody and bass line which we program into the Korg Elec-
words: bill bowman photos: main- michael gardner inset- n. brown SWEAT, SPIRIT AND SYNERGY
tribe SX. Once we have a couple of solidly produced parts that ev- eryone agrees on, we add counter melodies, drums, guitar, and finally write the lyrics.
Describe your live shows.
Live shows are by far our favorite part about creating music. We try to have as much fun as possible, to write music that when experienced live, leaves everyone sore the next day from dancing too much and fuels the night to the next level. Simply put it comes down to three words, sweat, spirit, synergy.
What show has been your favorite? One of our best shows this year was playing at the Texas Rock Fest in the wee hours of Friday night on dirty Sixth Street during SXSW. That show was so late in the night during a crazy week, so the crowd was more than ready to party.
What emotions do you try to infuse your listeners with? We like listening to music that make you want to just party and be happy. Our goal is to make mu- sic that excites the night and puts a smile on your face. Even if the lyrics are about an intense moment or tragic life experience, the music should always uplift.
If you weren’t playing music, what would you be doing? I would like to be an astronaut.
Do you see electronic music growing in popularity? Electronic music has already grown immensely in my opinion. With many parents buying their kids mixers instead of guitars and laptops rather than drum sets. The rise of electronic music seems lim- itless. The functionality seems to be fueling the movement. By using programs like Reason, an artist can
turn a room into a sound studio and summon any instrument they want. In Austin, the scene is build- ing and catching heat. A couple times a month you will find us at Republic Live checking out some of the amazing DJs Austin night culture is bringing to the city, and when the dance floor is packed till early in the morning, it is safe to say we’re not alone.
www.myspace.com/gobi
- Study Breaks


First, and most importantly, Plush is too small for Gobi. The duo has a very Ghostland Observatory-esque feel to them which naturally lends its self to dancing and generally having a good time. Gobi packed Plush, and there wasn’t much room to move, let alone dance.

That being said, I wholeheartedly endorse Gobi. They take some electronics and a guitar and create music that is upbeat, danceable and yet complex. For lack of a better analogy, Gobi makes music that is a playground for the ears. On this particular occasion, even the eyes got a show. Cool electronic shirts that moved to the beat, combined with a smoke machine and a crazy light machine created just the right mood for Gobi’s music.

I’m very excited to see what these guys have on deck. The potential to reach new heights is very palpable for Gobi. They’re playing another free show at Beauty Bar on August 5th. I recommend that you be there. - Ana Wolken


Y’all know I’m a big fan of Austin’s burgeoning electronic-dance scene. We’ve got SOOO much talent in this city, and I’m glad things are moving back towards my ravey roots. Sadly, the bros from Auto Body recently moved to New York, leaving us with a bit of a void in the true club-inspired dance acts.

Have no fear, my friends: When one door closes, another one opens. And that door is an inter-planetary portal opening to Austin’s electro-dance band GOBI. GOBI’s new EP, The Poltergeist Arcade, is a true space odyssey, taking you on a cosmic mind trip so intense, you’ll wonder if you’d been i-dosed.

The opening track Strobe Lights is like waking up from hypersleep. You’re a little groggy. The spaceship starts moving slowly out of orbit. The robot-like vocals bring you to consciousness as the playful synths blow a little solar winds your way.

By the time the 2nd track Dirty Dancin’ starts up, you’re awake, walking around, saying hello to your fellow passengers. Smile on your face, stars beam through the ship’s windows as you’re “feeling amazin’ so Patrick Swayze. Do the right moves, with the right shoes, Rick James attitude.” You’re groovin down those hallways–and that Thrillier-like synth line and guitar groove bring a little bit of space fog to your feet as you dance towards the bridge.

Bonefreeze drops some driving beats over an 80's guitar riff, leaving us zooming through hyperspace. And the bouncey arcade-like keyboard lets us know that this is serious business. In fact, it’s almost like we’re flying the ship in the video game classic Asteroids.

The fourth track, Poltergeist Arcade, has a more rock/funk-inspired tone. It’s starts off with some re-assuring synths, which quickly take a back seat to the guitars and drums. It’s almost like now you’ve dropped out of hyperspace into cruising speed–still a few asteroids to avoid, but you’re coming out of the rough and into smooth sailing.

For those of you missing the synths, they come back for the last track, Music Save Me. The last dance, the song brings you back to Earth. Safe from harm, you watch the ship continue on its funky voyage through the milk way and beyond.

Yeah. I was definitely i-dosed. - Chris Apollo Lynn - RepublicofAustin.com


I went to the Beauty Bar the other night to check out one of my favorite local bands, Major Major Major, who I thought would be playing at 11:30 that night. When I showed up around 11, another band was setting up on the stage.

GOBI is an electro dance group originally from San Marcos, Texas, who relocated to Austin in 2007 and have been playing the circuit around town, mostly in the Red River district but also at The Parish with some regularity. I wasn’t prepared for how good these guys are. To start with, I was incredibly impressed with the drummer, Matthew Kevin Dunn, for playing such destructive beats in between taking shots with his fans at the front of the stage. All three of these guys have massive energy on stage, and they do not disappoint in any way.Combined with the lasers and lighting at the Beauty Bar, this was a fantastic performance. I will definitely be heading to The Parish tonight to see GOBI perform, especially since that is my absolute most favorite venue in Austin. - Marshall Stokes


My final Free Week 2010 photo post. I already shared some pictures of Gobi playing the Beauty Bar, but I want to share some of my photos from their show at The Parish a few days later. That was a very fun night, big turnout and lots of energy on the dance floor. There were a couple other photographers there, including Delicious Noise and another person who I did not recognize.

GOBI, of course, was great, full of energy, pumped to play a show at such a great venue, and as usual they got a crowd of fans dancing immediately. At one point there were even chicks dancing on the stage with them. And they played my favorite Gobi song, Dirty Dancing, so I couldn’t be happier about getting to see these guys perform twice in one week.

Anyway, The Parish is pretty great for taking pictures of live performances because they have a nice lighting system with lots of moving spotlights and different colors, and a fog machine that can help create some dramatic images. It might be a little tough to get those perfect shots, but patience pays off at this venue, and I was able to shoot the entire outing at ISO 800, which makes me very happy. I threw away probably 100 photos, but those that turned out to be in focus and nicely framed are worth sharing. - Marshall Stokes


Move over, Ghostland. There's a new electro powerhouse in town, and this duo ain't leaving until they have all of Austin dancing. Composed of El Paso natives and childhood friends Phil Arciniega and Justin Dillon, Gobi was conceived after countless nights spent dancing in electronica clubs along the Mexican border town of Juarez. By the summer of 2006, when the friends returned to school at Texas State University, the band took shape and began playing shows around San Marcos. In 2007, the duo released their debut EP, "Welcome to Planet Gobi," and is currently working on their debut full-length, "Planet Gobi — The Cyborg Chefs of the White-Dwarf District." Tonight's performance is in celebration of vocalist Arciniega's 24th birthday. — Shannon McGarvey (Originally featured in the Austin American-Statesman and on Austin360.com) - Shannon McGarvey (Originally featured in the Austin American-Statesman and on Austin360.com)


Party pranksters GOBI took over Stubb’s this past the weekend to throw a single release party, and we had Laura Roberts on the scene to document all the fun. Although the single in question, “Born to Dance,” has been floating around for a while online, its parent album Gold on Black Ice is getting the deluxe reissue treatment on vinyl. The album reissue will be available in January, but until then keep an eye out for more GOBI dates and feel free to live vicariously through Laura’s photos. - OVRLD


hello friends! i'm just waking up to some crazy reports of flash flooding overnight here in austin. i'm gonna go survey the damage when i go running in a bit. apparently, there was SEVEN inches of rain on the east side where i live. anyway, i hope you guys are all doing well wherever you are. i want to remind you guys that my tuesday night residency at strange brew in austin continues this coming tuesday, 7/22. i have great guests who have both been on the show, jason blum and salim nourallah. here's the facebook event for it https://www.facebook.com/events/1455990667987885/ i think all of my guests have been on the podcast... ha ha. am i really just realizing that now?

episode 292 is a double-header! first up, pop group, GOBI (i'm wearing the shirt they gave me as i'm writing this. thanks guys!). there's not much dance/pop music going on in austin, but i'm happy to report that what is happening is great! the guys from GOBI stopped by a couple of weeks ago and we chatted about what they do, what they're up to and the release show they're having for their single, "born to dance" at stubb's in austin on july 25th. great guys, great conversation. our next guest is sara houser from the rock band, löwin. sara has been on the show before with her old band, the couch, but they have since split up and she has narrowed her focus, written some great songs, put a great band together and is out there kicking ass as we speak. they're actually playing a show TONIGHT friday, july 18th at the mohawk in austin, tx. anyway, sara and i have a great conversation about her journey and the new band, löwin. i had a great time talking to these two bands and it's nice to know that there is such diversity in this crazy little music scene. let's get down!
ciao! - How Did I get Here


The members of ‘GOBI’ share details about their upcoming performance at Stubbs, chat album details and more!

Their single release party, featuring dance pop group The Shears and psychedelic electro-rocker A.J. Vincent, will take place on Friday, July 25th at Stubb’s. Doors will open at 9 p.m. and tickets for the general public are $10 in advance and $12 at the door and can be purchased HERE! - The CW Austin


We sat down with Chuco Phil (vocals), Justin Dillon (producer, guitar) and Matt Dunn (drums) from GOBI to talk about dance culture, how Fort Worth has changed and what to expect next from Austin’s favorite local Indie Dance Rap group.
Welcome to Fort Worth! Is this your first time to play here?
Phil: This is our third time at this venue. I think we like playing (at Lola’s) because it’s like a small vibe, a cool dive bar with good sound. This area’s cool, a lot like Austin.
Matt: I have friends and family here. It’s much closer than going all the way to downtown Dallas.
You said you went to school here.
Matt: Richland High School, in Richland Hills. It’s the ‘burbs. You’re driving around at 10 p.m. and cops will pull you over for no reason. (laughs)
Justin: I’ve seen a lot of episodes of cops in Fort Worth.
Matt: Sometimes I watch and I say, I know that guy! (laughs)
Phil: We want our show tonight to make the next season.
The Born to Dance video is getting a lot of love on YouTube! How did the concept for the video come about?
Phil: Obviously it’s a very basic concept – LED background screen that we took to tour with us that you can port around. Our good buddy brad that we’ve known for a while wanted to do a video with us, but we didn’t know places where we could film. But the main concept was, what kind of dancing? Synchronized? Nah, man, we want people to show off all different styles of dancing. When someone dances it’s almost like their laugh – it’s a window to the soul. We have a couple professional dancers but a lot are just people our director found that we could showcase people from all different walks of life.
Justin: Dancing is the ultimate form of appreciation, the best judge of whether someone is liking us or not. But there are some people who straight up just don’t dance, and we’re like, ‘Man, that guy is not feeling it.’ But that’s the guy who comes up afterward and says, ‘Man your set was so great!’
Matt: I’m not a very good dancer so I appreciate them at least moving.
Phil: We love when people leave live shows exhausted and sweaty, almost like you were in a brawl. You feel so fulfilled with that exhaustion. There’s a big scene for dance and dance music in Austin, and if you wanted to meet people or pick up any of the hot girls you had to go dance (laughs).
Justin: It’s not how well you dance, it’s if you do or not. That’s really what matters.
Phil: It could be a hip hop set with your hands just up or a shoegaze show just kinda swaying. That’s all great, too. Just move. Have a good time. Life is too short.
Justin: We’re very un-judgey about it.
Phil: A lot of the time when I’m making a song I think, ‘How’s it gonna turn out live? If I was in the crowd would I get down to this?’
Did that vibe you felt from all the dancing and the dance scene in general influence your sound when you all formed GOBI?
Phil: When we first started thinking about GOBI, [Justin] had been in a lot of rock bands and I was really into poetry and spoken word. We wanted to put a dance influence in it because we were seeing bands like that a lot and DJs, and we really wanted to incorporate that into what we were doing. I never really see a DJ set with a bad set. Sometimes with other bands the guy’s voice is off or the guitarist is really drunk (laughs).
IDR – Indie Dance Rap! You guys are more or less pioneering that genre and the number one result on Google for it –
Justin: That was a big part of the thought behind that (laughs).
Who came up with or coined the genre name?
Justin: It’s hard to pin our music down because we have a lot of electronic elements, but I play guitar sometimes and he raps sometimes, and that combination isn’t all that present. So we just made something up and it’s easily searchable.
Phil: It came down to everyone asking us, “What do you guys sound like?” And we started using a big paragraph and decided we needed something short and to the point that kind of encompassed what we do.
Justin: You kind of know what it means, but you also don’t really know what it means (laugh).
Matt: It’s like EDM. It’s like saying, ‘I like music with guitar and drums.”
Justin: But not too specific, like saying nu experimental shoegaze versus experimental shoegaze or whatever.
Phil: We try not to stick to a certain genre. It’s super hard to do and we go into the studio with a different mindset for every different song.
Matt: Being able to do it yourself these days you can cross those barriers a little bit. Not everything has to be commercially acceptable. We kind of just do what we want.
Justin: I see a lot of bands doing that and I’d like to see even more.
Phil: We like to gather people who like a lot of different stuff. Or even people who don’t like dance music traditionally, we ask them to come check us out because we have different things they might end up liking.
How did the Born to Dance online “fan dance” contest turn out on Facebook?
Phil: We had a professional dancer who is really good at Dance Dance Revolution – he ended up winning that contest. He’s like a pop and lock-er, it’s really cool. I think people were kind of embarrassed to video tape themselves, but the people I never expected to submit ended up making a video.
Matt: It brough a lot of interaction to our Facebook page which was a big goal. We had some trouble with people saying it was just a popularity contest or something for likes.
Justin: We were like, ‘Yeah man, we put a dance mat in front of our house and yelled ‘dance off’ but no one ended up coming’ (laughs).
Phil: But it was really good. We brought some of the local dancers out so when we played Born to Dance they got to come out and dance.
Matt: I remember looking over at one point, and he was doing like the Neo/Matrix thing, and he wasn’t even moving, he was just down and backwards.
Justin: Every one of us was kind of neglecting what we were supposed to do because we were watching him. We had to remember to play (laughs).
Phil: You gotta engage your fanbase. Whether people made a video or not, there’s a lot of engagement. We had kids dancing and girls hoola-hooping so it was very interesting.
Justin: We try to come up with different creative things to see what hits. So it’s more than just like, ‘Hey we’re playing this day. Come.’ You’re trying to get people to pick you over everything else going on that night. Sometimes people just want to stay in and watch Netflix. Or Wu-Tang is playing down the block. But you want people to pick you and bring more people in.
Coming back to Fort Worth now, what’s it like compared to when you were in school?
Matt: We always played around the Stockyards and the Aardvark, headed over to The Door a lot. And in Deep Ellum things kind of closed down and went on the decline. I had a blast playing there when I was 16/17, we all thought we were rock stars. Then I moved down to the Austin area because I heard it was kind of the Mecca for music. But then I saw Fort Worth grow. It’s more of a hometown feel and the local businesses and community has really grown. There’s concerts on the Trinity River where you can float and listen to music – that’s really cool. I love seeing it make this rebound with the culture. Sometimes in Texas the fine arts can be put a little lower, so it’s nice to see that comeback. I don’t see it slowing down. And it’s become more diverse – I mean we’re playing in a saloon. That’s great.
You guys are playing the Spiderhouse Ballroom back in Austin on the 29th. Do you have anymore live shows in the works or a tour after that date?
Phil: We’re playing College Station next weekend for kids going back to school. We have a pretty good fanbase out there so it’s always a great show. After that we have our next big show in Austin November 14. We’re blessed enough to have a big fanbase there so we try to make it a big, big show. We’re trying to get back to New York in the fall, and L.A. Got some bigger cities in the works but we’re not doing any touring until the new album comes out.
Justin: The funny thing about our fanbase in Austin is that there’s not really any big ‘IDR’ fans there so you kind of have to build it up (laughs).
Phil: But we would have some guys in the front row who knew all the words to our music. I got a little taken aback because I wasn’t expecting it – the song wasn’t even out yet and these guys already knew it.
Justin: We played a Halloween show where this guy dressed like Richard Simmons, and he had all these girls with him doing this jazzercise dance thing which was really fun.
Gold on Black Ice has been out for a year now with good success! You said a new album comes out in January – what can we expect?
Phil: Right now it’s six tracks, but we keep writing more and recording more, so we’re gonna put probably five or six new tracks on there and 14 or 15 tracks total. We decided to take the bold move and re-release the album and it made it feel a little more complete. - Good Bamm Show


GOBI: One of Austin’s Most Unique Bands Finds Its Voice
FEBRUARY 16, 2015

article by Gina Sigillito

Music fans who happened to be wandering past Holy Mountain off Red River last weekend may have noticed that it felt more like a packed dance party than a typical Saturday night show. The mesmerizing trio of Justin Dillon, Chuco Phil and Matt Dunn took the stage for the rerelease of their new CD Gold on Black Ice (Deluxe Edition). From the very first beat, they gave the kind of high octane, groove filled performance they’ve become famous for. Bathed in red strobe lights, the band made the floor shake until the wee hours.

GOBI (Gold on Black Ice) is an innovative Electronic Dance band, but they possess an element and style that make them so much more. Their unusual mix of heavy beats tinged with percussion, hip hop and culturally literate lyrics have earned them a loyal following not just in Austin, but across the country.

The Austinot sat down with the group recently to discuss their journey from West Texas to Austin, their love of every genre of music out there, and their place in the Austin music scene.

From Discos of Juarez to Clubs in Austin

GOBI was born in El Paso where Justin and Chuco Phil met as kids. The pair became fast friends, sharing a love for the burgeoning club scene in Mexico. The boys would often cross the border to Juarez on the weekends to soak in the throbbing beats of the discotecas there.

Unlike many forms of music, the popularity of Electronic Dance was growing in El Paso before other areas. As Justin recalled, “I think it hit El Paso a lot faster than it did here [Austin]. Just because it’s right next to Mexico, it was probably more popular there. In El Paso, you kind of get things twice. You get music when it’s popular in the U.S. and then when it’s popular in Mexico.”

Chuco Phil agreed, adding, “Things that are popular in Mexico are different than what’s popular here, so the dance vibe was definitely part of it. A bunch of our friends used to go to raves out in the desert, but we were going to the clubs in Juarez.”

Justin and Chuco Phil met Matt Dunn while they were attending Texas State in San Marcos ten years ago. The trio was complete.

When the band came to Austin, hip hop and EDM were both relatively new and the guys had to find their niche in the local music scene. “Austin’s a place where you definitely have to pay your dues, and in a good way,” Chuco Phil asserted. “No matter what genre you’re playing, you have to play live and you have to play well live. You’re really one fish in a giant sea of touring artists as well as local bands.”

Austin music fans were incredibly receptive to GOBI and the band soon earned a consistent fan base. As Justin observed, fans in Austin have a wider musical palate than people often give them credit for. Matt added that since the band started playing live, audiences have given them an overwhelming reception, turning venues in town into dance clubs.

GOBI’s Unique Style


GOBI is known for spontaneity on stage (Credit: James Conant)
The brand of music that has brought GOBI such acclaim is steeped in the band members’ eclectic tastes. Justin Dillon began listening to a little bit of everything. As a fan of EDM, he remembers a mystery to this form of music when it first came out. “You really never see how EDM is made, and that’s part of the mystique.”

Drummer Matt Dunn, who takes his influences more from metal and industrial music and bands like Ministry and Radiohead, observed that adding live drum beats and percussion makes GOBI’s music all the more multi-layered.

Chuco Phil has a love for hip-hop that infuses the band’s songs with topical, smart references that range from Martha Stewart to Michael Jackson. The band also has a darker, more serious side, especially on their hauntingly beautiful track, “Dream With Me.”

Their Secret to Success

Part of GOBI’s success is a penchant for making themselves so rare. Unlike many bands with regular residencies, the trio plays few live shows in Austin. When they do, their gigs become spectacular events, complete with live visuals and fans dancing on stage with the band.

There is a pure, unbridled joy at their shows, which comes from the band’s love for spontaneity. They are off the chain, in the best way, and fans never know what to expect when they come to gig. “We do improvise a lot, which is rare. A lot of dance groups have to stick to a certain structure,” Chuco Phil mused. Matt added that he loves the excitement of not knowing what’s going to happen. “Someone could come on stage and try to tackle Phil,” he joked.

Recently, GOBI was named Austin Music Foundation’s artist of the month, and last summer the mayor of Austin declared June 6th as GOBI Day. Their infectious rhythms have garnered them a place on stage with acts such as G-Eazy, The Cool Kids and Chiddy Bang, plus DJs like MSTRKRFT, Treasure Fingers, Z-Trip and Paper Diamond.

GOBI has also taken the festival circuit by storm, performing at prestigious events such as Insomniac’s Nocturnal Fest, Neon Desert Music Fest, Bacardi+ Fest, Red Guerrilla Music Fest and the Pachanga Music Festival. “What motivates us is that we’re highly competitive, mostly with each other, but we love supporting other bands. There’s room for all of us in Austin,” Justin observed. They also see their fans as friends, enabling them to form a special bond with their audience.

The Future

Austin Music Producer AJ Vallejo
GOBI’s newest album was produced by AJ Vallejo (Credit: AJ Vallejo)
GOBI’s new CD just came out last week, but it’s already garnering widespread acclaim from local and national media. The release, produced by friend and acclaimed musician AJ Vallejo, features a slew of new songs that are as captivating as the group’s older music.

Justin is also working on a side project he calls “Tombstone Disco,” which will feature visual elements like dancing skeletons. GOBI is writing new songs with some notable EDM vocalists, and it will be fascinating to see what this fun, smart and highly creative trio comes up with next. - The Austinot


Please go to link to view article. - RAD MAgazine


Never straying from dark and danceable indie-electronica, this trio stamps its first LP with confidence. “Empty Streets” surprises with its mid-song rap before the techno-synth swoops in, and a percussive cover of Drake’s hit “Hold On, We’re Going Home” closes the album. - Austin Monthly


hello friends! i hope you're all doing well. i'm good, but it's been a crazy week. i started this songwriting game with my friend cory where i have to write a song every day until february 25th. it's pretty crazy, but i've written 5 songs this week! i've also done 6 podcast interviews, played a solo show and i'm playing with SKYROCKET! tonight (fri 1/30/15) at hanover's in pflugerville and in houston at the continental club tomorrow (sat 1/31/15). anyway, i'm glad i'm playing this songwriting game. as soon as i write some good ones, i'll post them on soundcloud and let you know.

my guests for episode are austin's premier e.d.m. band, GOBI! this is GOBI's second time on the show. they have a fantastic new album, gold on black ice that comes out february 10th. you can pick up a copy before it comes out at their record release on february 7th at holy mountain in austin, tx. we have a great conversation about the making of gold on black ice, playing edm in austin, how they play shows and much, much more. i have a great time talking to phil and dunny. enjoy! - Johnny Goudie's How Did I Get Here?


GOBI closed out the night with their mix of indie and electronic. They have incredible energy on stage and no one was standing still. They mixed live performance and electronic music and created this perfect combination. Chuco Phil, the vocalist, created powerful visuals through his lyrics that kept the audience captivated and wanting more. We couldn’t have asked for a better closer for the radio show. - Hunnypot Radio (Los Angeles, California)


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

Photos

Bio

"I dig the record and the production is tight." - Thomas Turner (Ghostland Observatory) on the new 'Gold On Black Ice' album

"the mood coming from their dance-music-meets-rap set was just so goddamn good that I didn’t want to leave." -Red river noise
"the trio’s most recent record features five new tracks that extend the range of their dance-heavy electronica. The new cut “Lost in the City” features an unlikely cameo from 2009 “American Idol” semifinalist Kendall Beard." -Austin 360
"That wasn't bad. I kind of liked it." Mayor Lee Leffingwell after watching GOBI's performance. He then proclaimed June 6,  "GOBI Day" in Austin.

"Never straying from dark and danceable indie-electronica, this trio stamps its first LP with confidence." -Austin Monthly

"GOBI breaks the EDM mold into pieces and re-constructs it into their own super Frankenstein creation of bombastic beats, Dillon's brilliant melodies & Chuco Phil's rapid-fire yet smooth hydroponic flow. The hooks are insane and inescapable. Everyday working w/ them was a sonic & exciting treat to the senses." - AJ Vallejo / VMG, Producer/Publisher

"Reminding me variously of Trentemoller, a darker Mylo and some of Radiohead's post-Kid A stuff. On top of that smart, fun instrumental base, frontman Chuco Phil laid down his Kweli-via-De la Rocha flow" - Red River Noise

GOBI's debut release "Gold On Black Ice (Deluxe) LP", takes the Austin based trio's indie-dance style and adds new depths, allowing the bass and beats to drive fans to the dance floor, but also creating images of fading dreams and a nostalgic yearning for the past.  It is rare to find this type of dimension from a band known for turning Texas clubs into blazing dance floors, but GOBI has achieved the balance of meshing dark, sometimes cinematic beats, with the mosaic of imagery that vocalist Chuco Phil delivers through tight rap inspired flows and melodic choruses.  "Gold On Black Ice" (released in February of 2015) debuted as the #1 most added album on CMJ's Hip-Hop charts and #3 on RPM.  The album stayed on the CMJ top 40 for 12 weeks and rose to #4 on the RMP charts among notable dance acts Dan Deacon, Purity Ring, and Diplo.  The success of the album has gained GOBI newly found national attention for a band that has been making noise in their home base of Austin, Texas for the last few years; gaining a solid following and garnering accolades, where they recently received an Austin Music Award during SXSW 2015 for best EDM/Dance. 


GOBI's newest single "Dream With Me" seems to rise from a place that is both comfort and pain, a landscape that soothes with swooping synth tones, and haunts with a touching grace.  On the LP, Justin Dillon accomplishes the majority of the heavy electronic emphasis in the production, using analog synths and modern plug-ins, taking cues and inspiration from the likes of Deadmau5 and Nero; but the band is far from pushing play when it comes to their live performance.  Though GOBI presents itself on record as an electronic heavy group, drummer Matthew Kevin Dunn adds a live element that is a spiritual awakening for percussion enthusiasts.  

In a city known for music, the band's energy fueled live show has gained them Austin Music Foundation's artist of the month, an Austin Music Award for best EDM/Dance, and last summer the mayor of Austin declared June 6th as GOBI day.  GOBI has shared the stage and opened for acts ranging from: G-Eazy, The Cool Kids, ZEALE, and Chiddy Bang, to Dj's such as MSTRKRFT, Treasure Fingers, Z-Trip, Paper Diamond, and new dance groups Big Gigantic, Future Rock, Auto Body and Nobody Beats the Drum.  GOBI has showcased and performed at Insomniac's Nocturnal Fest, Neon Desert Music Fest, Bacardi+ Fest, Red Guerrilla Music Fest, and the Pachanga Music Festival.  

Management: Milton Hopkins | 310*488*9297 | mh@umgmt.com Social Media:

Publicity: Heather Wagner Reed | 713*208*3891 | Heather@juiceconsulting.net FB | Twitter | Instagram | @GOBIband

Booking: JD | 915*740*7728 | Booking@GoldOnBlackIce.com Official Site:

www.GoldOnBlackIce.com

Video: Born to Dance

www.youtube.com/watch?v=aNbsx8WGhlw

Video: EPK

www.youtube.com/watch?v=cAkO7Yyb2Wk 


Band Members