Golden Gardens
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Golden Gardens

Seattle, Washington, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2010 | SELF

Seattle, Washington, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2010
Band Pop Electronic

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Oct
20
Golden Gardens @ The High Dive

Seattle, Washington, United States

Seattle, Washington, United States

Jul
08
Golden Gardens @ Sunset Tavern

Seattle, Washington, United States

Seattle, Washington, United States

Aug
15
Golden Gardens @ Vanfest 2015

Maple Valley, Washington, United States

Maple Valley, Washington, United States

Jul
16
Golden Gardens @ Kremwerk

Seattle, Washington, United States

Seattle, Washington, United States

Jun
13
Golden Gardens @ Seattle Rock n Roll Marathon

Seattle, Washington, United States

Seattle, Washington, United States

Jun
06
Golden Gardens @ Cellar Door

Port Townsend, Washington, United States

Port Townsend, Washington, United States

Jun
05
Golden Gardens @ Anacortes Music Channel

Washington, United States

Washington, United States

Mar
29
Golden Gardens @ Hollow Earth Radio

Seattle, Washington, United States

Seattle, Washington, United States

Mar
08
Golden Gardens @ Barboza

Seattle, Washington, United States

Seattle, Washington, United States

Feb
01
Golden Gardens @ Kelly's Olympian

Portland, Oregon, United States

Portland, Oregon, United States

Jan
31
Golden Gardens @ Deadbeat Records Olympia

Olympia, Washington, United States

Olympia, Washington, United States

Jan
24
Golden Gardens @ Cellar Door

Port Townsend, Washington, United States

Port Townsend, Washington, United States

Jan
23
Golden Gardens @ Columbia City Theater

Seattle, Washington, United States

Seattle, Washington, United States

Aug
31
Golden Gardens @ Bumbershoot Festival

Seattle, Washington, United States

Seattle, Washington, United States

Jul
18
Golden Gardens @ Nectar Lounge

Seattle, Washington, United States

Seattle, Washington, United States

Jul
18
Golden Gardens @ Nectar Lounge

Seattle, Washington, United States

Seattle, Washington, United States

Music

Press


"KEXP's Music That Matters - Live Music in Seattle, Week of 2/5"

This year, Dancing on the Valentine 13 features Black Night Crash, Golden Gardens and many more awesome bands that come together to raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. - King 5 (NBC)


"PREMIERE: Watch Golden Gardens’ Video for “Extrasolar Heartbeat”"

Premiering today on Northwest Music Scene is a killer new video from Golden Gardens. The video is for the song “Extrasolar Heartbeat” from their album Reign, released last fall. (Check out our album review HERE.)

The video for Golden Gardens’ “Extrasolar Heartbeat” was shot on location around Capitol Hill in Seattle, WA in September 2017. It was directed by Kavan the Kid, a fine art/self portrait photographer and video director based out of Los Angeles and Seattle (http://www.kavanthekid.com/). Band members Aubrey Bramble, Gregg Neville, and Carl Germain are seen performing the track in an abandoned studio space and walking through town in slow motion, on a decidedly gray PNW day. The whimsical and colorful vibe of the video with its red hues and vibrant squiggle-motion animation suits the mood of the song perfectly, an upbeat yet anxious sparkle-pop immersion into the throes of unrequited love and “what if” daydreaming.

Golden Gardens will be celebrating the five year anniversary of their 2012 LP How Brave The Hunted Wolves by playing the album in its entirety with a full live band and special guests at Barboza on Thursday November 30, 2017. Support for the night will be Shadowhouse (post-punk/Portland) and Charlatan (noise pop/Seattle). Tickets are $8 in advance and $10 at the door. 21+, 8:00pm. - Northwest Music Scene


"The bracing delight of Golden Gardens’ ‘Reign’"

It’s no wonder the word “seductive” comes to mind while listening to Golden Gardens’ third album, Reign. After all, the opening track, “La Belle Dame Sans Merci” (“The Beautiful Woman Without Mercy”), references one of the most seductive women in literature and art, the “Full beautiful … a fairy’s child” of the 1819 John Keats poem of the same name (which was itself based on Alain Chartier’s 1415 poem of that name; the “Beautiful Woman” has also been depicted in paintings by John William Waterhouse and Arthur Hughes, among others). When Aubrey Bramble’s cool, dreamy vocal sings about being lulled to sleep “forever,” it’s alluring and tantalizing. You can readily imagine willingly laying down and drifting off into that eternal sleep.

Female archetypes appear throughout the album (as well as the cover, featuring a line drawing of an intimidating warrior princess). The song “Dream of Venus,” was inspired by the Salvador Dali exhibit of the same name at the 1939 World’s Fair, which Bramble considered “a surrealist review of the Divine Feminine in its varied forms, both exalted and condemned,” in the words of the press release. The video, inspired by the work of surrealist filmmaker Maya Deren, has Bramble as a decidedly Northwest Venus, not rising from a frothy sea surrounded by angels, but alone on a chilly, desolate shore. Elsewhere, she contemplates a chess game played by men who seem impervious to her presence, keeping her at a distance, as you hear her singing about terrible dreams she can’t escape. As a dream of the goddess of love, it’s most unsettling.

Golden Gardens features Bramble and Gregg Neville on guitar/bass/synths/percussion (they’ve since added a drummer), and Reign is a haunting and mesmerizing work. The synths create a lush backdrop for the songs, with Neville’s guitar adding some texture. And what makes the music especially enticing is the mix of soothing melodies and lyrics that bite. “Immortality Forever” seemingly celebrates just that — if you overlook the references to dark desires and pleas to “dig the knife in deeper.” Similarly, the love expressed in “Light of the West” is an all consuming force, turning the object of desire into “My prisoner, my prize.” And there’s no need to say why you should wary of someone describing themselves as the “Queen of Air and Darkness” (sample line: “Your pain makes me whole”). The songs are filled with a sense of foreboding, but like a compelling mystery, you can’t turn away; you’re taken in, spellbound.

This is an album of gorgeous sounds and potent thoughts that you get more out of with successive listen, as you’re drawn deeper and deeper into the magical, mystical, ominous world that Golden Gardens creates. - NW Music Scene


"Golden Gardens Unveil Their New Video for “Dream of Venus”"

We’ll readily cop to nursing a major band crush on goth-romantic duo Golden Gardens in these virtual pages for several years now, so The SunBreak is especially proud to premiere “Dream of Venus,” the band’s newest video.

“Dream of Venus” is one of the indisputable highlights of Reign, GG’s new full-length, and that’s saying a lot, as the whole record’s pretty damned wonderful to begin with. The duality in the band’s sound is in full swing here, with Gregg Neville’s wall of guitars, keyboards, and synthesized percussion deftly intertwining dark atmospherics with ravishing beauty throughout.

That yin-yang pull extends to singer Aubrey Bramble’s haunting lyrics. Unabashedly romantic Venus-rising imagery contrasts uneasily with stark reality, and Bramble’s voice—the sound of an ethereal spirit facing the discomfiting realities of love’s sometimes-dark corners—provides the exquisite tension that makes this gorgeous track so compelling.

Add in director Andrew Sobey’s broodingly beautiful footage of a rain-spattered Northwest coast and a surreal interlude in Vito’s Cougar Room, and you’ve got a magical little pocket universe ready for the taking. Listen, watch, and be captivated. - The SunBreak


"Pazz & Jop, the Village Voice Music Critics Poll: The Top Albums of 2016"

This year, over 500 Pazz + Jop critics submitted their top ten albums and singles. With albums, they have 100 points to divide among their top ten picks, with each entry receiving no more than 30 points or less than five. There's no point-ranking system for the singles category, which remains amorphous, comprising individual songs, remixes, downloads, viral sensations, etc. Literal release dates aren't binding, but a record or single's "impact" should have occurred primarily in 2016; in most cases, if it got votes in 2015 and 2016, we combined the two totals. It's not as complicated as it sounds. Thanks especially to all voters, commenters, and essayists. - Villave Voice


"Best of 2016: 187 Songs We Liked A Whole Lot"

Our annual year-end coverage begins with a list of our favorite songs. No rankings. No separating national artists from the oodles of Seattle-area artists making great music. No mid-article ads. No slide show formats to sell more ads. No pretense that we’ve collectively determined the “best” music of 2016. Just an alphabetical list of the single tracks we most enjoyed listening to this year with handy links to hear them and learn more about the artists.

We’ve also made a handy playlist so you can hear most (about 10 of our choices are not available on the Spotify platform) of the tracks easily, in one spot.


Golden Gardens – “Immortality Forever”
Listen to “Immortality Forever”
Read our 2014 interview with Golden Gardens
Check out Golden Gardens’ Facebook page - Nada Mucho


"Music that Matters: Radio Kids"

Music That Matters, Vol. 547 – Radio Kids

For her first mix of 2017, Cheryl Waters gathers tracks from as far north as Norway, as far south as Australia, and, as always, some local Seattle tunes for a vibrant set featuring new tracks from Laura Marling, The Besnard Lakes, and Moon Duo.

Tracklist:
1. Laura Marling – Soothing
2. Jenny Hval – Female Vampire
3. The Veils – Swimming With the Crocodiles
4. Beyond The Wizards Sleeve – Iron Age
5. The Courtneys – Silver Velvet
6. Moon Duo – Creepin’
7. The Besnard Lakes – Laura Lee
8. Golden Gardens – Dream of Venus
9. Fast Romantics – Why We Fight
10. Strand of Oaks – Radio Kids
11. Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever – Julie’s Place
12. Teenage Fanclub – I’m In Love
13. NE-HI – Stay Young
14. My Goodness – Islands
15. Crying – There Was a Door
16. RNDM – Stray - KEXP


"The best local music of 2016: KEXP’s DJs give us their lists"

Troy Nelson (Saturdays, 3-6pm)

Golden Gardens — Reign

NAVVI — Omni

Acapulco Lips – Acapulco Lips

Crater — Talk To Me So I Can Fall Asleep

DoNormaal – Jump or Die


Larry Rose, Host of Larry’s Lounge (Tuesdays, 9pm-1am)

Tacocat — Lost Time

Navvi — Omni

Kyle Craft — Dolls of Highland

Deep Sea Diver — Secrets

Golden Gardens — Reign

Naked Giants — R.I.P. EP

Sloucher — Certainty EP

Tres Leches — Tres Leches EP - Crosscut


"Song of the Day: Golden Gardens – Extrasolar Heartbeat"

Local electro-pop duo Golden Gardens released their second LP last month, the first full-length album from the duo since 2012’s How Brave the Hunted Wolves. This doesn’t mean they’ve been lazy: members Gregg Neville and Aubrey Bramble have filled the meantime with a handful of successful EPs, as well as shows in Seattle, LA, and Chicago. Today’s Song of the Day, the first single from Reign, keeps with the otherworldly aesthetic that Golden Gardens fans have come to expect. The simple, vague lyrics evoke a sense of loss while remaining open for interpretation, and Bramble’s smooth vocals are bolstered by just the right amount of hypnotic synth. In the band’s own words, the new album is all about “Empowerment. Individuality. Beauty. Shining your unique light as brightly as you can in this fucked up world of ours.” - KEXP


"Golden Gardens’ ethereal tunes come Thursday to High Dive"

If David Lynch needs a band to provide music for his upcoming “Twin Peaks” reboot, he should keep Golden Gardens in mind. The Seattle-based duo’s dreamy, dark, ethereal pop would provide the perfect backdrop for Lynch’s noirish scenes of mysterious goings-on in the dank forests of the Pacific Northwest.

But see for yourself Thursday (Oct. 20), at Fremont’s High Dive, where Golden Gardens will be celebrating the release of its third album, “Reign.”

Golden Gardens came together in 2010, when multi-instrumentalist Gregg Neville, then based in Florida, mused online about wanting to put together a band along the lines of U.K. gothic-rock outfit Cocteau Twins.

Aubrey Bramble, who had known Neville from when she lived in Florida but had since moved to Seattle, had never sung in a band before, but had always wanted to.

“I asked Gregg if I could try to come up with some vocal melodies or ideas with whatever he had composed — even though I didn’t live in Florida,” she said. “He was like ‘Oh, sure.’ ”

Music files were swapped, and the two soon had enough tracks for an EP. Six years on, Neville has since relocated to Seattle.

The landscape of “Reign” is populated by powerful female archetypes drawn from the band’s interest in literature, art and mythology. The opening track, “La Belle Dame Sans Merci,” references the John Keats poem and John Williams Waterhouse’s painting of the same name, about a beautiful woman luring a knight to his doom. “Dream of Venus” is an homage to both the Salvador Dali exhibit of that name at the 1939 World’s Fair and the goddess of love.

Musically, the sound is lush and seductive, with swirling synthesizers, edgy swipes of guitar and the ominous, repetitive beat of a drum machine. Bramble’s high, clear voice adds tartness. When she sings “And no matter what you say/I will always get my way” in “Queen of Air and Darkness,” it’s both a promise and a threat.

“I feel like we’ve always done a good job of having stealth messages in the songs,” Bramble said. “Some of our saddest songs are maybe the songs that sound the happiest, and some of the happiest songs are the songs that sound the saddest.”

The album marks the first time Golden Gardens has recorded in a professional studio, working with producer Martin Feveyear (Mudhoney, Shelby Earl, Mark Lanegan), giving the music a more streamlined sound than previous recordings. And yes, the band’s name does refer to Ballard’s Golden Gardens Park, which Bramble first visited when the flowers were in bloom.


“I thought the name fit our sound well,” she said. “To me it conjures up dreamy imagery of these gilded gardens of magic.”

That’s the Golden Gardens aesthetic — looking at the ordinary and finding the sublime. - The Seattle Times


"Three Great Local Bands, Three Unmissable Live Gigs"

Sometimes that story is about refinement. Sometimes, it’s about changing gears. Reign, the latest full-length from gothic romantics Golden Gardens, pretty much represents both sides of that coin.


On the face of it, Reign is a representative slice of the band’s gossamer goth dance music. But rather than follow the ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ ethos, GG have grown and expanded the scope of their sound.

Veteran producer Martin Feveyear’s work behind the boards accentuates the great stuff that’s already there. Aubrey Bramble’s spectral voice emerges in full flower—equal parts siren-song eerie (on album opener “La Belle Sans Merci”) and heart-on-sleeve little-girl-lost (“With Your Chariot Marked by Stars”). Feveyear’s low-key but effective touch also captures Gregg Neville’s walls of keys and guitars with crystal clarity.

The band’s stepped up with their most versatile batch of tracks yet. “Conventina” finds the band at its most richly dark and creepy, with Neville’s wheezing, clanking electronics wrapping their black-sleeved arms around Bramble’s haunted vocals, while “Immortality Forever” takes an unashamed dive into straightforward dance pop that’s at least as catchy as anything storming club playlists right now. You can judge for yourself as the band plays their record release show at Fremont’s High Dive tonight. (Surrealized and Eastern Souvenirs open, show at 8:30 P.M.) . - The SunBreak


"100 Bands in 100 Days Presented by Verity Credit Union — Day 28: Golden Gardens"

Music fans of the Pacific Northwest, hello and welcome back to our third annual year-end daily countdown, 100 Bands in 100 Days, where every day until December 31st, we’re showcasing a new band or artist you have to know about, presented by Verity Credit Union. Follow the #100Bands100Days hashtag on Twitter to stay on top of all the bands featured and make sure to follow Verity on Twitter as well. Some days the featured act could be an established and locally-adored northwest-based musician that perhaps you haven’t been turned onto yet, and other times they could be a band with a small following that just hasn’t had their deserved time in the sun yet. Either way, we’re fairly confident you can come away from this daily segment with plenty of new favorites. Today we’d like to shine our spotlight on one of the Emerald City’s most consistently strong bands, and one of those bands that only seems to be getting better and better with each new release, Golden Gardens!

As Golden Gardens, duo Aubrey Bramble and Gregg Neville have been making some of the northwest’s most overcast and beautifully ghostly music since the two started the project in early 2012. It wasn’t long before the duo realizes together that they’d stumbled upon something truly magical, and would go on to put their music to tape shortly thereafter, beginning with the dreamy and otherworldly How Brave The Haunted Wolves in November 2012. Right from the opening notes of the album’s cascading and cloudy opening track, “Swirl,” local music enthusiasts knew they were in for something breathtakingly special. When listening to the duo’s music, so many other great bands, new and old, spring to mind — New Order, Pygmalion-era Slowdive, Beach House at their fuzziest — but it’s the perfect crossroads between atmospheric and upbeat that makes the duo so compelling. Despite the labels of both “rock” and “pop” being applicable to Golden Gardens’ music, the band’s sound — particularly their later work — feels like it sits more on the rock side of things more often than other dream pop bands of the modern era, with their electric guitar and harder-edged drum beats (despite the drums primarily being programmed), but this momentum is balanced perfectly with synthesizers that add a lot of sweet textures to the band’s sound, not to mention the intoxicating and fantastic vocal work from Bramble.

Golden Gardens are set to release what’s possibly their most defining record to date, Reign, on October 21st, easily their most varied and surprising album to date, as well as their catchiest. Sunshiny, guitar-pop jams a la Craft Spells make an appearance on this record (like the album’s lead single, the great “Extrasolar Heartbeat”), but these easier-going tracks are found sharing the same track listing as songs that feel incredibly dark and eerie, like the horror movie-ready “Coventina” or the closing track, the industrially-tinged “Mirror of Silver,” a perfect track to play at your next goth rave in an abandoned warehouse. It can be difficult for a band that was formerly a fairly low-key and lo-fi rock or pop project to transition into a fuller-sounding, more accessible, and higher-fidelity project without sacrificing a lot of the charm that the humbler recordings brought to the table, but Golden Gardens’ upgrade to a higher-quality recording also brought with it bold new directions in their sound, which all go down without a hitch, and make the album one of the most enjoyable we’ve heard all year.

We think it’s fair to say that Golden Gardens are one of the most essential bands in Seattle right now. It’s hard to listen to the band’s best material and not be taken aback by the sheer amount of talent and attentive ear for sonic bliss that Golden Gardens offer through their music.

Golden Gardens will have their album release party tonight(October 20), at the High Dive in Seattle.

You can follow Golden Gardens on Facebook and Twitter, and keep up with the band through their official website, wearegoldengardens.com. You can preorder Reign through goldengardens.bandcamp.com/album/reign digitally or on CD, and with a variety of options for additional goodies. Stream Reign below via SoundCloud. - Northwest Music Scene


"HAUTE MACABRE EXCLUSIVE – GOLDEN GARDENS / REIGN"

Aubrey Rachel Violet Bramble and Gregg Alexander Joseph Neville are Golden Gardens: a mystical duo up from the nocturnal underground, weaving dreamscapes and anthems for magical minds. Their latest offering, REIGN, is currently available for pre-order and Haute Macabre is delighted to bring you an exclusive stream of the entire album in advance of the Friday, 10/21 release.
Golden Gardens are an etherpop band from Seattle by way of Northern England and the darkest shores of New Jersey, and REIGN finds them teaming up with producer Martin Feveyear (Mark Lanegan, Mudhoney, and others) on their first release since 2013’s Bellflower and Narcissus, two enchanted mirror-image EPs exploring the cycle of love from the budding luster of infatuation through the darkly shimmering despair of longing.
Golden Gardens initially formed on the cold expanse of the Internet when multi-instrumentalist Neville, then living in Tampa, posted the call for a vocalist to his Twitter. After several years of sending partially-completed songs back and forth like a digital version of surrealist parlor game Exquisite Corpse, Neville moved across the country to join Bramble in Seattle. The rest, as they say, is history… though the two still compose separately. “I can be in this little cocoon in my studio and sort of wait for that alchemical inspiration,” Bramble said in an interview for Pre/Amp Music. “Sometimes I want to sleep and have a dream and think about what I want to add to the song. That’s a lot more mystical than doing it in a room together.”
Golden Gardens’ lyrics have always traded in mythology and the occult, layering dreamy vocals over synths and electric guitar to produce haunting tracks about sirens, goddesses, and sorcery. REIGN continues this theme with 9 luminscent songs exploring the theme of reclamation; Bramble describes it as “an invocation to the warrior queens and the enchantresses, the mystics and the misunderstood.”
“A track whose sonic palette is large driven by synthesizers and electric guitar, “Extrasolar Heartbeat” is among the more dense and woozy tracks Golden Gardens have released. The vocals from Aubrey Bramble are bold and upfront in the mix, and the plinky synth melodies give the song a more playful edge.” — Northwest Music Scene on REIGN’s first single.
Like many of today’s artists, the members of Golden Gardens find their fingers in multiple creative pies. Bramble also crafts oil blends (including lines of fragrances inspired by Twin Peaks and the Witches’ Wheel) and performs healing crystal magic as Swan Children Alchemy — a recent interview with Haute Macabre’s S. Elizabeth can be found at Unquiet Things — and Neville is at work on a dark folk project called Weaver’s Triangle, named after an area of 19th-century industrial buildings in his hometown of Burnley, Lancashire.
“Lyrically, most of my stuff is sort of from an occultist, metaphysical basis. I’m really into nature on that level and sort of using celestial imagery, botanical imagery, seasonal imagery and things that for me are sort of magical, esoteric. I’ve always been into fairytales and spiritualism. Not spirituality but sort of that underlying, magical buzz that floats around the universe. It seems natural for me to explore those themes and pour it into my songwriting.” — Aubrey Rachel Violet Bramble.
Pre-order REIGN via the Golden Gardens bandcamp page and follow Golden Gardens on Facebook and Instagram. Pre-orders include an immediate digital download plus a CD shipped out on release day; deluxe pre-order packages come with an additional, limited-edition 11×17 print of REIGN album illustration by artist Kirk Damer and a handmade booklet of lyrics to various albums, singles, and EPs including REIGN.
Golden Gardens plays the REIGN release show on 10/20 at Seattle’s High Dive with Surrealized and Eastern Souvenirs. I am lucky enough to know both members of the band personally and am so proud of the growth and experimentation audible on this album; please join me in welcoming this divine spell into the world. - Haute Macabre


"Singles (and EPs) Going Steady: A Local Music Playlist"

Golden Gardens, “Extrasolar Heartbeat”(single): We at the SunBreak have always been saps for Golden Gardens’ brand of goth-pop, and this taster for their forthcoming Martin Feveyear-produced long-player Reign will not disappoint. Feveyear’s production adds a more driving, direct sound to Gregg Neville’s guitars, and Aubrey Bramble’s ethereal vocals have never sounded better. - The SunBreak


"Music that Matters: Strange Relations and Lost Boys"

Music that Matters, Vol. 525 – Strange Relations and Lost Boys
DJ Atticus takes you on a journey through love – a series of emotions caused by serotonin and anxiety – featuring thirteen first-hand stories of love and heartbreak from Still Corners, Whitney, The Faint, Xenia Rubinos, and more.

Tracklist:
1. Still Corners – Lost Boys
2. Golden Gardens – Extrasolar Heartbeat
3. Preoccupations – Anxiety
4. Fujiya & Miyagi – Serotonin Rushes
5. Klaus Johann Grobe – Geschichten aus erster Hand
6. Strange Relations – Ceremonies
7. Yumi Zouma – Keep It Close to Me
8. Samaris – Wanted 2 Say
9. Whitney – No Woman
10. Tobacco – Gods in Heat
11. The Faint – Young & Realistic
12. Xenia Rubinos – Don’t Wanna Be
13. Sløtface – Sponge State - KEXP


"Listen to the New Golden Gardens Single, “Extrasolar Heartbeat”"

As summer gets hotter and sunnier, the market demand for gauzy, sun-scorched music grows and grows. Lucky for us, one of Seattle’s most dependable dream pop acts, Golden Gardens, honored the call with a new single, titled “Extrasolar Heartbeat.” One of the band’s first original tracks since their strong Bellflower EP in December 2013, “Extrasolar Heartbeat” is a track teasing their sophomore full-length LP, Reign, projected for a late October 2016 release independently.

A track whose sonic palette is large driven by synthesizers and electric guitar, “Extrasolar Heartbeat” is among the more dense and woozy tracks Golden Gardens have released. While the track is atmospheric and intoxicating, it doesn’t overplay the digital effects and ethereal production as to forget to actually include a song with the dream-like sounds. The vocals from Aubrey Bramble are bold and upfront in the mix, and the plinky synth melodies give the song a more playful edge.

“Extrasolar Heartbeat” was produced by Martin Feveyear, most notable for his production work on albums by Mark Lanegan, Duff McKagan’s Loaded, Mudhoney, and many more, and with him behind the engineering wheel, you can look forward to a lot of crisp, tight-sounding tracks on Reign. It’s certainly an album to look out for as we get closer to the end of the year. - Northwest Music Scene


"New Music Roundup // July 15"

Golden Gardens - "Extrasolar Heartbeat"

Another Locals Only discovery comes to us from our guy Steven Graham. The Seattle band released their new single "Extrasolar Heartbeat" a couple weeks ago, but we can finally share it with you this week. Their sound is good for fans of M83 and the like. - 107.7 The End


"Song of the Day: Golden Gardens – Mirror of Silver"

Golden Gardens namesake was inspired by Lewis Carroll’s poem “All in the Golden Afternoon” and the image of Seattle’s Golden Gardens park in late Spring. They also self describe their music as “dreamscapes and anthems for magical minds.” So it is no surprise that the duo make music that uses its sunny disposition to provide ample opportunity to get lost in. Single “Mirror of Silver” begins with thumping bass and seems to be primed to break out into a club ready dance track. But before you can even began to think about busting out the glow sticks, Vocalist Aubrey Rachel Violet Bramble’s sleepy voice rings out, balancing out the electronic drive with a dream-like haze. The track serves as a prime example of Golden Gates aptitude on taking listeners on sonic adventures through a mist of the surreal.

You can get a cassette of “Mirror of Silver” on Golden Gardens bandcamp and catch them live at Nectar Lounge on October 21st. They are also shooting a music video in Seattle on August 31st and are looking for people who like to dance to help them out. More info on that can be found on their Facebook page. Below - KEXP


"An Interview With Golden Gardens"

Q. When did Golden Gardens started, tell us about the history...
Gregg: We knew each other before the band, being active in various experimental art scenes and attending the same goth club. Somewhere in the midst of 2010 we began collaborating on music and have been doing so ever since.

Q: Who are your influences?
Aubrey: I'm really into old Bollywood singers like Asha Bhosle and Lata Mangeshkar. I'm also super influenced by Middle Eastern music; some of my favorite artists in that vein are Azam Ali and Yasmine Hamdan. Kristy Thirsk, who often sings for Delerium but also has her own projects, has been one of my biggest vocal influences in general.

Gregg: So many to name. Probably TOO many. Right now I'm partial to dark metal, dreamy electronic music, 60's torch singers and dancey industrial.

Q. Make a list of 5 albums of all time…
Gregg (in no particular order):
Katatonia "Last Fair Deal Gone Down"
David Bowie "Aladdin Sane"
My Dying Bride "The Angel and the Dark River"
Skinny Puppy "Rabies"
Mina "Studio Uno"

Aubrey (in no particular order):
Kate Bush "Hounds of Love"
Bjork "Homogenic"
The Cure "Wish"
Red House Painters "Red House Painters I"
Sade "Diamond Life"

Q. How do you feel playing live?
Aubrey: Magical. I leave my earthly body and go someplace else. Words can't really describe it. The feeling is one of non-embodiment and perfect total embodiment all at once. Time does not exist. It's beautiful.

Q. How do you describe Golden Gardens sounds?
Gregg: Dance music for vengeful ghosts.

Aubrey: Starlight twinkling on obsidian waters.

Q: Tell us about the process of recording the songs?
Gregg: We both have home studios, so we can have perfect soltitude while still being collaborative. It's the ideal situation for people with our mentalities.

Aubrey: We write pretty independently of one another. I think it lends a complexity to our compositions that might be lacking if we were writing in the same room.

Q. Which new bands do you recommend?
Gregg: I have been enjoying Wind Burial, High Functioning Flesh, Azar Swan, The Foreshadowing, Anna Calvi and King Krule.

Aubrey: I second Wind Burial. So good.There are so many great bands coming out of the PNW these days. I can't name them all, but Nostalgist, Charlatan, Vox Vespertinus, somesurprises, The Spider Ferns, Crater are all making some killer sounds. As for artists from other places, I am really into King Woman, Ibeyi, and Vaadat Charigim right now.

Q: Which bands would you love to make a cover version of?
Gregg: We run through some cover songs when playing live, sometimes we put them online for people to hear.

Aubrey: I've always thought it would be fun to cover Marilyn Manson.

Q: What´s the plan for the future....
Gregg: We have a 2-song tape coming out on July 16th with two brand new tracks on it, "Mirror of Silver" and "When Your Tears Have Drowned You". You can listen and order it through our Bandcamp site.

Aubrey: We've got a release party coming up for it here in Seattle at Kremwerk that same night with more killer PNW bands Red Ribbon, KA, and Satsuma. After that we've got some fancy things in the works for a new album, new shows, and lots of touring. Hopefully outside of the US.

Q: Any parting words?
Aubrey: Blessed be. - The Blog That Celebrates Itself


"Golden Gardens - Mirror of Silver"

For more than 6 years, I lived a stone’s throw away from Golden Gardens Park, a rough beachfront that was as cold and refreshing as it sounds. A piece of quiet on the edge of Ballard. Between it and walks to the Chittenden Locks to watch passenger and freight boats move between waterways, there was solace to be found among natures as a neighborhood was gentrifying before the historic community’s eyes. It’s this basis that boils beneath the Seattle-duo Golden Gardens, blending the serenity of nature with the hectic pace of progress. An album that divides its two selections into a dancing ballads for a world advancing much faster than we’re able to process, yet one that still treasures the lore of old. So much like Ballard, Golden Gardens are built on decades worth of the mythology glossed over by new tech: a bit of techno, house and disco bubbling beneath its new facade of droning melodies and strong pop vocals. The cassingle’s title track fights with its pop inclinations, before giving way to them. It’s not bad; sometimes the “experimental” set is looking to bust loose and dance. B-side “When Your Tears Have Drowned You,” is where Golden Gardens reflect the changing atmosphere of a city at odds with its past and future. The band lays down its dancing alms and produces a sensual composition that never climaxes, afraid it might scare away the old patrons of this growing neighborhood, and yet “When Your Tears…” should never climax because Golden Gardens — the band as well as the park — are in constant flux. There is no end to gentrification, not even the limits of sky and law. And in that moment of clarity does Golden Gardens (the band) becomes Golden Gardens (the park). A living plot of land that will always change both by the decision of man and nature. Seattle has a real reflection of itself, and a nice one-two punch of drone-age dance to match. - Tiny Mixtapes


"Friday, Jan. 30: Golden Gardens"

From the cacophonous pounding of the drums that open Golden Gardens' Bellflower EP, you'd be excused for thinking that a Spector-esque wall of '60s sound was coming your way. As it is, that sound almost immediately gives way to a gothic, Nick Cave-esque haze. Churchly piano and '80s synths waft in, accompanied by the ghostly vocals of lead singer Aubrey Bramble. Golden Gardens make the type of music that you might hear on the Heathers soundtrack, or in the dorm of that beautiful, moody girl down the hall - you know the one. Things rarely rise above a low roar, but the threat is always on the horizon for Golden Gardens to do some serious damage. This is meditative music that doesn't soothe so much as gently raise the hairs on the back of your neck.

GOLDEN GARDENS, w/ Wind Burial, somesurprises, Weather WhenThe, 8 p.m., Deadbeat Olympia, 266 N. Division St, Olympia, cover tba, 360.943.0662 - NW Military


"Best Single Bumbershoot Day Ever?"

1:30 PM, Pavilion Stage - Golden Gardens (DON'T MISS IT!)

The otherworldly femme fatale vocals will melt that gun right out of your trembling hand, detective. What's that, the floor is disappearing from beneath you? You're going down into The Big Sleep but trust me you'll feel more than just a little death. Exquisite, elegant noir-pop that is a must-see for all fans of the best years of the label called 4AD. - Three Imaginary Girls


"What We Think of Every Single Band Playing Bumbershoot This Year"

GOLDEN GARDENS
(Sun, 1:30 pm, Pavilion Stage) Scoring all your haunted sleepwalking and/or heavy-skied daydreams since 2010, Seattle's Golden Gardens craft moody, blue, velvet-hued synth-rock for lonesome souls and underappreciated poetic types. Their recently released Bellflower EP shows a heightened attention to detail and diversity, with standout "I'll Burn Alone" sounding like a lost cut from the Drive soundtrack, and "Carmilla" even making baby steps toward the dance floor. - The Stranger


"Reviews of (Pretty Much) Every Single Band That Played Bumbershoot Sunday"

Led by the creamy, angelic singing of Aubrey Rachel Violet Bramble, Golden Gardens proved themselves to be Seattle's premier goth-gaze-techno outfit at the Pavilion Stage, which couldn't be a more sterile environment for live music. The trio—all dressed in black—seemed to have been beamed in from a European metropolis circa 1989, blurring elements of Durutti Column, Cranes, and '90s German techno from the Tresor label. - The Stranger


"Bumbershoot 2014 Day 2 Recap: A Magical, Line-Free Sunday"

Next up were Golden Gardens, presenting their “dreamscapes and anthems for magical minds.” Aubrey Bramble’s spectral voice was the pitch-perfect soundtrack for an apocalyptic prom, and I wished I were watching this show on a bitterly cold January night. Songs for empty cities, flashing lights, the rain turning into ice. When I closed my eyes, I could get there, although the sun streaming in from an open doorway interrupted my reverie and I realized it was time to return to the daylight. - Nada Mucho


"Bumbershoot, Day Two"

Far better than the first two bands of the day, Golden Gardens trafficked in ethereal, slightly gothic, electronic soundscapes, with spacey vocals floating over the wash of sound. They kept asking us to dance, but we didn't. Welcome to Seattle, folks. - Music Dissolves Watrer


"KEXP Presents: We (heart) Seattle Second Annual Planned Parenthood NW Benefit Concert"

There’s a lot to (heart) about Seattle, including the way our music community supports local non-profits. Which is why KEXP is thrilled to team up with Nectar Lounge, Planned Parenthood, and The Stranger to present We (heart) Seattle: the Second Annual Planned Parenthood NW Benefit Concert on Friday, July 18th!

KEXP chatted with Nikolas Peterson, President of the Young Professionals of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, and Mario Abata, Talent Buyer / Promotions Manager at Nectar Lounge, to find out more about this now annual event.

How did this event come to fruition?

Nikolas: Every January, Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest’s Young Professionals group sits down and votes on which fundraising events they would like to host that upcoming year. 2013 was an ambitious year for us as we chose to take on three large scale events (bingo, a benefit concert, and our annual burlesque show) and several small ones. Last year’s concert was held in September at Neumos and had 400 guests, a costume contest, and two absolutely amazing 80s cover bands — Rewind and Nitewave. This event proved to be a great way to get community members, especially millennials, involved in supporting Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest (PPGNW) in a really fun and and positive way. As voting time came around for the 2014 fundraising year, another concert was a “no brainer.”

Mario: As a talent buyer for Nectar Lounge, I worked closely with Planned Parenthood to book the music for this event. I got my start in the music industry by booking benefit concerts, and some of my favorite shows over the years have been for a cause. So, I was thrilled to be involved when Planned Parenthood reached out to us.

How did you go about choosing the bands for this year’s event?

Mario: La Luz was a suggestion of the team over at Planned Parenthood, and they just seemed like a no-brainer for this show. Golden Gardens, I felt were a great stylistic pairing and The Gods Themselves are a brand new side-project of Seattle’ punk/pop band Atomic Bride, so I felt they were an exciting addition as well. Jason Webley rounded it all out, adding some eclectic diversity to the bill and the prestige of a longtime Seattle favorite — 16 years strong into his career. I’ve just heard so much praise over the years for his raw live performances, when he joined the bill I was ecstatic to hear that he’ll be performing new material.

Nikolas: We had an amazing time with the two ’80s cover bands last year, but unfortunately due to conflicting schedules we needed to expand our search. Nectar Lounge has been an amazing establishment to work with and were instrumental in setting up this concert and getting the bands on board -- La Luz, Jason Webley, Golden Gardens, and The God’s Themselves. It’s important for us to have bands who are local, supportive of PPGNW, and who represent reproductive health in a positive way. We cannot wait to hear them rock out on Friday night.

What do you (heart) most about Seattle?

Mario: Some of the most exciting music nation & worldwide is emerging out of Seattle right now. In addition, as a city, we’re innovating and challenging norms in policy on so many social fronts... Now is a very exciting time to live here.

Nikolas: We (heart) the the sense of community that Seattleites bring to our events. This is a time where reproductive rights are under attack and it is extremely refreshing to host an event where we get folks from all walks of life, businesses, artists, you name it, who want to rally with us and support the work that PPGNW is doing to keep our community strong and healthy.

What are some of the biggest needs Planned Parenthood faces today? And how can our listeners/readers help?

Nikolas: The biggest thing Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest needs right now (besides donations to assist the patients we serve) is people to join and mobilize our movement. It is 2014 and the Supreme Court of the United States just said that corporations can deny women birth control. What era are we living in? We need people to be loud and proud about supporting reproductive health – this is none of our bosses business! - KEXP Blog


"La Luz, Jason Webley, Golden Gardens, The Gods Themselves"

What to say of this talent-jammed bill? We've got La Luz, the badass noir-surf soundtrack to every movie Tarantino should've been making since the late ’90s. We've got folk-mystic superhero Jason Webley, who I've heard is in the habit of killing and then resurrecting himself at shows, via magic or some such thing. Plus underdog synth-poppers Golden Gardens (really, give their latest EP, Bellflower, a listen: It nearly equals Beach House for affecting, gothy/gauzy textures), and the brand-spanking-new the Gods Themselves, a funk-dance hybrid showing a metric ton of potential. Oh, and it's a benefit for Planned Parenthood, which makes your support doubly important. KYLE FLECK - The Stranger


"Live Video: Golden Gardens"

Seattle duo Golden Gardens aim to infultrate a meaningful part of your mind. The beauty of the band, however, is that it is not obvious which part of your psyche they have in their sights. It is a constant journey for you, the listener, to figure out what’s in their scope as you continue to hear the music that spins around you, dashes betwixt memory and nostalgia, squirms amidst loss and gain. Influenced by - we can only assume - mountain mist and wild fire smoke, melting ice and the tips of flame, Golden Gardens will find you and then find you again. Test their ability to do just that here, in their live performance on KEXP’s Audioasis with DJ Sharlese. - KEXP Blog


"KEXP Live Performance - Golden Gardens"

Golden Gardens
2/15/2014
In-Studio Performance
Seattle group Golden Gardens play dreamy pop-rock that mimic their namesake and favorite summer hangout spot. Golden Gardens perform songs from their 2013 EP " Bellflower". - - Audioasis


"2013 Top Ten Spotlight (DJ Sharlese)"

Top Ten EPs
Ubu Roi - Nice Dude (Help Yourself)
Shy Girls - Timeshare (Hit U.S.A.)
youryoungbody - Kurokabi (self-released)
Neighbors - I Love Neighbors (self-released)
Rrose - Monad XVI (Stroboscopic Artefacts)
Vice Device/Void Vision [split] (Accident Prone)
Brothers From Another - Tacos on Broadway (self-released)
Archangel - Metal/Momentum of the Farce (LIVE) (Foom Music)
Hanssen - Programme (Pleasure Boat Records)
Golden Gardens - Bellflower (self-released) - KEXP


"Narcissus EP Review"

Seattle-based shoegaze/dream-pop duo Golden Gardens might be a new name to regular HSS readers, but I'm ready to introduce you to the dreamiest band you've heard in ages. You can thank me later. The pair consists of Gregg Alexander Joseph Neville, the multi-instrumentalist genius who constructs shimmering soundscapes over which Aubrey Rachel Violet Bramble weaves her subtle vocal magic. The sounds contained in "Narcissus" are neither the overly dense fuzz-pop that often fits into the "shoegaze" world nor are they minimalist pieces. Golden Gardens take great care to craft balanced and memorable songs that have elements of artists like Stereolab, Slowdive, or even a bit of Portishead at times, but never feel like mimicry of another artist's style.

Golden Gardens' strongest suit is their self-restraint. Many bands who work in more ethereal forms of music tend to just let each song bleed all over itself, with each sound existing in an uncontrolled universe. While the music retains its fluid nature, Golden Gardens clearly have taken great time placing each note and each vocal line exactly where it needs to be. Subtlety is absolutely key here, as it can often be the line between artistic excellence and self-indulgent excess. I certainly feel that while the album may be a reflection on infatuation and perhaps even self-love, Golden Gardens' sense of identity is strong without giving in to the temptation of bloated, heavy music.

While the album lingers for a brief twenty-minute span, the highly accessible nature of the music and the incredibly catchy tunes make it perfect for repeat listens on lazy afternoons or relaxing evenings. This album will be released on June 11th, but you can listen in full right now. Be sure to visit Golden Gardens' bandcamp page or check out the Neon Sigh website once it's officially released next week! Until then, enjoy the stream and let us know what you think! - Hammer Smashed Sound


"Song of the Day: Golden Gardens - The Ghost Of A Total Stranger"

Golden Gardens seem like they just spent the morning eating a nice piece of cherry pie, drinking a satisfying cup of coffee, and are now interacting with some of the regulars of the Twin Peaks diner. Their Lynchian sound, however, is not contrived – it is, indeed, of a spiritual arena. Harmonies glued and jumping and diving betwixt other shadow harmonies. The Seattle duo, who note “music boxes and icicles” as some of their influences, play a sort of dream pop music where an imagined creature is looking in on someone else’s nightmare, all while a porcelain ballerina turns and turns.

“The Ghost of a Total Stranger” begins with a bang, setting up instantly the drama, but then the song softens with strings and the feeling of depletion. The journey the tune takes you on reminds one of those shots of poor Laura Palmer on the beach, still, as the waves crash. Waterfalls, raindrops, a rocket launch a thousand miles away, “The Ghost of a Total Stranger” is big and petite all at once.

The band, comprised of Gregg Alexander Neville and Aubrey Rachel Violet Bramble, have been playing shows and preparing a music video release since their album dropped in October. They’ll be playing next on January 16 at The Sunset with Wind Burial and KYLMYYS. Look for more information and other tour dates on their website and Facebook page. - KEXP


"CD Reviews - This Week's Releases"

When this local dream-pop act released its EP Narcissus this past summer, the duo seemed to be going for a more lighthearted, few-cares-in-the-world approach. That’s why Bellflower, which the group released this fall after cutting ties with local label Neon Sigh, seems such a departure. From the opening notes of “The Ghost of a Total Stranger,” it’s evident that this collection of songs is much darker than the last, with vocalist Aubrey Rachel Violet Bramble adapting her dreamy soprano into something a little more urgent, a little more eerie. The murkier approach is also felt in the noticeably more haunting production; sparse arrangements, simmering electronic beats, and rumbling percussion create a somber backdrop for Bramble’s creeping vocals. As a whole, Bellflower is a welcome mixture of mystery and magic—some sort of love child of Phantogram and Purity Ring—and it results in an audio sensation that’s equal parts beautiful and heartbreaking. Yet the highlight of the four-track EP may come in the closer, “In Dreams I Roam the Petaled Gloom,” a vibe-y slow-roller that finds Bramble’s words weaving in and out of bandmate Gregg Alexander Joseph Neville’s fuzzy guitars and springy synths. The result is an audio experience that will leave you wanting to hear more and more with every listen. And while the limited-edition physical CD is already sold out, you can find a digital copy through the band’s website (yay for the Internet!) - Seattle Weekly


"Top 10 NW Releases 2013"

6. Golden Gardens- Bellflower EP, Limited edition physical release date 29 October 2013

Their seducing aura inhabits your atmosphere with air steady beats and beaming vocals. - Seattle Peach


"Spellwork and Ritual Slaughter: An Interview With Golden Gardens"

Golden Gardens are a Seattle duo that make lush, textured dream pop. In anticipation of their performance at our NadaMucho.com Presents show at Barboza on Friday, March 14, we chatted with Aubrey Rachel Violet Bramble and Gregg Alexander Joseph Neville about their band and their music.

NM: Give us a bit of history. How did Golden Gardens get to this point?

ARVB: Spellwork. And ritual slaughter.

NM: Yikes! Did I read somewhere that you were on opposite sides of the country for a while? How did that work?

ARVB: It worked much the same way it does now – we sent each other music telepathically and across the invisible sparkle-pathways of the Internet, back-and-forth, until a song reached interplanetary completeness.

NM: You describe your sound as “Dreamscapes and Anthems for Magical Minds.” Care to elaborate on that?

ARVB: I draw musical inspiration from the Sirens, and strive to create songs that would otherwise lure unsuspecting souls to their watery graves. What sound would one like to hear on his descent into the Underworld? I imagine a “Dreamscape” is a pretty good descriptor. Magical minds are just psychic twins that vibrate on the same wavelength we do

NM: Is Golden Gardens just a duo, or has the band grown to include more full time members?

ARVB: We have had the occasional additional member on stage, but like to keep things properly cultish and exclusive on the creative side. Our secret society is a party of two.

GAJN: We don’t play well with others creatively. It does sometimes work out performance-wise, though.

NM: Are you guys, like, going steady? Or just band mates?

ARVB: That’s a little insulting, NadaMucho. We’re more than band mates, we’re pals. Like Clarissa and Sam. And no, we are not dating. Well, unless you count our relationship with Thee Dark Lord Himself (Morrissey).

NM: Golden Gardens is a park in Ballard where lots of kids from Renton smoke cigarettes and wear Ed Hardy gear, which doesn’t seem very mystical. Why did you pick that for your band name?

GAJN: We are here to help the Ed Hardy kids, to teach them the cultural superiority of Tapout and Affliction shirts.

NadaMucho.com: What’s next for Golden Gardens?

GAJN: We are working on a DVD that will feature all four videos that our artist friend Ariana Dominguez shot for the Bellflower songs. We also started production on a new album fairly recently. We’re not rushing it and are taking our time with crafting the songs.

ARVB: The DVD will include never-before-seen video footage, special mixes of some of our songs, and secret messages about kittens. We plan to have it ready for an extremely limited release (~25 copies) in early Summer. Handmade packaging and enchanted details guaranteed. Keep an eye on wearegoldengardens.com for details as they shimmer up from the ether.

Golden Gardens will help NadaMucho.com celebrate its first site redesign in a decade by performing alongside NAVVI and Trentalange at our March 14 showcase at Barboza. Tickets available at: http://thebarboza.com/event/trentalange/. - Nada Mucho


"Golden Gardens' Appropriately Chilly New Music Video For "Carmilla""

You know what's bold? This typeface. You know what else? Beginning your new music video with 15 seconds of solid blackness. Seattle electro-goth duo Golden Gardens earns that darkness with their song "Carmilla." The whispery intro, pulsing cold bass line and bell tolling present a backdrop worthy of a miniature horror flick, and with a name like "Carmilla," what'd you expect?!

The song is from their Fall 2013 EP, Bellflower, which the group plans to commemorate with a DVD containing music videos shot by videographer Ariana Dominguez for all four songs from the release, in addition to "a featurette, live footage, special remixes of the songs, and more," according to the press release (check out already-released videos for "The Ghost Of A Total Stranger", and the exquisite "I'll Burn Alone" while you're in the mood). The DVD reportedly drops early this summer, but if you're still hankerin' for some Golden Gardens morsels, and don't feel like getting sand in your jorts, go ahead and stream their recent KEXP in-studio performance/interview right over-->here. - The Stranger


"Golden Gardens Dreams Into The Mystic"

It's cold at Golden Gardens on an early November afternoon. The sky is gray, the beaches are desolate, and a light, chilly breeze passes through the trees. It’s the perfect cinematic setting for a conjuring or just something sinister – something enchanted.

“I’d only been here once [when I first moved to Seattle] and they had these giant poppies growing… and it was grey and a little sunny. It was this magical place,” Aubrey Bramble says.

Bramble and her coconspirator Gregg Neville adopted the Golden Gardens name as their own. Though locals may recognize the name as the not-so-scenic beach in Ballard, the band says that outside of the city limits it resonates only as a dreamy descriptor for their music. Dreampop soundscapes with gothic themes. The mystics and mythical thrive in Golden Gardens’ music.

“I feel like if you listen to us you feel like you’re in a mystical garden of magic,” Bramble laughs.

The band leaves the wicked beach and moves over to a bench near a playground. The empty swing sets create an eerie vibe of their own.

Bramble and Neville met when they both lived in Florida. Bramble would host art, music, and film events around town. She’d show movies and book bands, meeting Neville through her husband when Neville was creating noise music under the moniker Nowhere. The two actually connected over cinema before music. It wasn’t until Bramble moved to Seattle did the two begin to collaborate after Neville mentioned he needed a vocalist for a new ethereal, Cocteau Twins inspired project.

“I had never written a song or done anything like that and I was like ‘can I just try?’’ Bramble says.

Neville sent Bramble some tracks to work with, she recorded her vocals and sent them back. After hearing what she did, Neville says he knew they had to work together. After working remotely for their first full length album and a couple EPs, Neville moved up from Tampa to Seattle after getting a job offer.

“Seattle seemed like a great place for music and to live. Since I’ve come out here I’ve found it’s pretty much met all my expectations,” Neville says.

“The Seattle music scene, even though it’s so big, I feel like there’s much more of a cooperative sense and feel,” Bramble says, noting how it was hard to book shows at all back in Tampa.

Though they live in the same city now, the duo has primarily stayed to their original means of working. Bramble and Neville take on each of their parts separately. Neville sending the backing tracks for Bramble to add melody and lyrics.

“Solitude definitely helps my creative process,” Neville says. Though they could be in the same room to bounce ideas off one another, both found that they prefer it this way.

“I can be in this little cocoon in my studio and sort of wait for that alchemical inspiration,” Bramble says. “Sometimes I want to sleep and have a dream and think about what I want to add to the song. That’s a lot more mystical than doing it in a room together.”

For Bramble, finding and indulging in the mystical is an ongoing pursuit. She was raised Roman Catholic but left when she was “old enough to think for herself,” she says. She was also Wiccan for a while. Imagery of the fantastical is more likely to come up in her lyrics instead of thoughts on mundane reality.

“I don’t really write lyrics from a personal standpoint. I’m more creative; I like to imagine fantasy worlds and situations,” Bramble says. “If I think ‘I want to write this song about sadness or love’ or ‘anger’ or whatever the emotion is then I try to find an interesting or creative way to explore that rather than to do a singer-songwriter type thing.”

Creative for Bramble means dabbling to the fantastical. Not necessarily in the way that Led Zeppelin would create sonic stories of Middle Earth. It’s the darker, more gothic and ethereal. The songs feel transcendental and spiritual.

“Lyrically, most of my stuff is sort-of from an occultist, metaphysical basis. I’m really into nature on that level and sort of using celestially imagery, botanical imagery, seasonal imagery and things that for me are sort of magical, esoteric,” Bramble says.

From her religious background, Bramble is drawn to delving into rituals and how they play it out even in other aspects of culture.

“I’m really into historical-religious, mostly Roman Catholic, rituals and rights. To me it’s really occultist… I really believe in energy and karma and those sort of more intangible things,” Bramble says.

“I’ve always been into fairytales and spiritualism. Not spirituality but sort of that underlying, magical buzz that floats around the universe,” she continues. “I love fantasy. I love psychic communication, esoteric fanciness. It seems natural for me to explore those themes and pour it into my songwriting.”

On the other side of it all, Neville doesn’t hold the same beliefs as Bramble. But leaning toward dark imagery and fantasy isn’t something he’s too unfamiliar with.

“I’m very atheistic and pragmatic in my views,” Neville says. “But I was always the kid that you knew in high school who was in to monster movies… 10 years old already reading Stephen King books. Getting into the darker and sort of weirder things, though it’s not something that stays with me in my day-to-day life, it’s always a very pressing interest for me.”

The dichotomy of views carries over to the musicianship itself. Though Bramble leans more toward nature imagery and spiritual undertones, Neville’s compositions sometimes run more toward the 21stcentury manifestation of electronic music with echoing electric guitars. Tracks on their latest EP, Bellflower, incorporate jarring synthesizers and snappy synth drum loops. “Carmilla” has the atmosphere of an underground nightclub, yet Bramble sings menacingly (then sweetly) over the track in hypnotic Latin.

“Honestly, the electronics came out sort of naturally,” Neville says. “When we first started out I was really kind of just learning how a lot of software works and how I could just piece things together. So if you listen to our earlier stuff they’re very guitar based.”

“Some of the drums were trip-hop inspired but not all of them. As time went on, I started listening to more stuff and got interested, ‘how could I incorporate this into Golden Gardens?’” Neville says he asked himself.

The band’s versatility and willingness to morph with their surroundings has proven itself to be a valuable asset. Golden Gardens’ unique “dreamgaze” sound helps the group stand out from their peers. Neville says he doesn’t think anyone else in the area sound quite like Golden Gardens. While Neville has a background in the harshness of death metal and noise music, Bramble primarily delved in the dreamier act like Cocteau Twins and The Cranberries. The mixture of the two sounds, plus embracing even further outside of conventional genres, primes them for crossover accessibility.

“On one hand, I think a lot of what we do is inoffensive… We’ve had like old people be ‘we like you!’” Bramble jokes.

“First band that I’ve been in that my mom likes,” Neville laughs.

Some people call the songs pretty while others say they’re dark and somber, the band says. Golden Gardens attests this to their commitment of straying away from being pigeonholed.

“It’s not so tunnel vision into one genre. It’s not rock, it’s not like electronic, it’s not like goth, it’s not like pop.” Bramble says.

Depending on the bill and the type of show they’re playing, the band will change up their setlist to be most appropriate. They’ll break out their more reverb centered tracks at shoegaze shows. If they’re playing with a bill of producers, they’ll focus on their more electronic material. Sometimes they’ll even remix their own songs. For a recent Halloween show where they were on a black metal bill, they remixed their songs to be less ethereal and more foreboding.

The band’s output has been nothing short of prolific. Since 2010, they’ve put out eight releases; a combination of full lengths, EPs, and splits with other bands. The band is constantly working.

“We’re drilling. We’re musicians. What are we going to do except make music?” Neville says.

Bellflower finds Golden Gardens going even shadier.

“The theme of the EP is the dark side of love, the sad side, the side that you’re pushing it away and trying to get over,” Bramble says.

Between the spiritual undertones in their back catalog and the constant experimentation, Bellflower is testament to the band’s willingness to reach out further and deeper. All fantastical topics and sounds are open for interpretation in their discography.

“There’s a couple of songs that have been about certain tarot cards, some that have been about communicating with ghosts, and some that have been about having a psychic self that is outside of your body,” Bramble says.

Golden Gardens plays with magic. On a cold November day at their namesake or on a shadowy stage, Bramble and Neville are bewitching. Dabbling in the occult may often be a device used to scare the masses in movies and books, but it doesn’t have to be that way; it can be inspiration.

“When you’re conjuring the mysticism, a great way to do it is through music,” Bramble says. “And you can come up with that with that witchy air and make it feel cool and I think you can kind of put a spell on your listeners.” - Pre/Amp


"Song of the Day: Golden Gardens - Transparent Things"

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Every Friday we spotlight a Northwest artist. Today’s selection, featured on the Mornging Show with John Richards, is “Transparent Things” by the aptly named Seattle band Golden Gardens off their 2012 album, How Brave The Hunted Wolves, on Neon Sigh.

Golden Gardens – Transparent Things (MP3)
With an eclectic list of influences ranging from “Music boxes and icicles,” to Greek mythology and Marcel Duchamp it’s not really a surprise Seattle dreamgaze duo Golden Gardens are able to find their own captivating sound in a genre often brushed aside for being dull and boring. Instrumentalist Gregg Alexander Joseph Neville and Aubrey Rachel Violet Bramble, whose vocals are reminiscent of a much sleepier and much less creepy Twin Peaks soundtrack, came together as Golden Gardens in 2010 to record something “original and alchemical” and instantly began creating undeniably enchanting and mythical soundscapes.

The first single off their latest album, “Transparent Things” is an absolutely-dreamlike song that slows down/speeds up/completely messes with time, trapping whatever it is you happen to be doing or not doing at that time and holding onto it in that moment for exactly three minutes and 11 seconds. ARVB’s vocals barely rise above the atmospheric shoe-gaze-stylings of GAJN, filling the track with all-consuming ethereal and dreamy textures. Good luck trying to make out exactly what she’s saying and if you can, you’re missing the point.

In case you missed them last night at the Comet Tavern, Golden Gardens currently have dates scheduled in Portland and Seattle in the upcoming months. More information on those dates is available here and on their Facebook page, but in the meantime be sure to check out the incredibly dreamy and low-budget video for “Paresseux” off their 2010 debut release the Somnabulist EP here:
- KEXP


"Golden Gardens Craft Gothic Synth Odysseys on How Brave The Hunted Wolves"

On their second full-length, singer Aubrey Bramble and multi-instrumentalist Gregg Neville blend trip-hop beats with Bramble's just-out-of-reach vocals and some decidedly gothic undertones. The songs on How Brave The Hunted Wolves are dreamlike guitar and synth odysseys that, sonically at least, resemble The Cure circa Disintegration if they had known about shoegaze. - Seattle Weekly


"Golden Gardens: How Brave The Hunted Wolves"

How Brave The Hunted Wolves, Golden Gardens' follow-up to 2011's full-length debut Between the Siren and the Amulet, presents the latest collection from self-described Dreamgaze duo vocalist Aubrey Rachel Violet Bramble and instrumentalist Gregg Alexander Joseph Neville. That the two identify their hometown as Utopia (rather than Seattle, Washington where the album was recorded) and characterize their music as “Dreamscapes and Anthems for Magical Minds” says much about the kind of alchemical experience the new release offers.

Though it's sometimes unwise to read too much into song titles, “Swirl,” “An Apparition,” and “Pearls Pierce the Mists” certainly do much to convey the gothic and oneiric qualities of the group's sound. Infused with mystery, “Gemini” and “A Sudden Violent Rainstorm” play like cryptic, modern-day Grimm Fairy Tales brought to haunting synthetic life. The group's reverb-drenched sound is well-served by a soul-stirring setting like “Alcove,” whose sheets of sound resonate at an epic pitch, while the album's dreampop at times feels oceanic it's so huge (e.g., “Transparent Things,” “Pearls Pierce the Mists”).

For those desirous of a reference point, Golden Gardens drinks from a similar well as Cocteau Twins, though the former opts for a slightly more atmospheric approach compared to the latter, whose music typically finds a melodious pop heart strongly beating beneath the music's gauzy surfaces. Not surprisingly, Aubrey Rachel Violet Bramble's singing isn't as distinctive as Liz Fraser's, whose vocalizing is a thing of beauty indeed, though that's less a criticism of the Golden Gardens singer than it is an acknowledgement of Fraser's singular gift. Bramble's vocal sound is closer in style to a singer such as Julee Cruise than Fraser anyway, which is consistent with Golden Gardens' emphasis on moodscaping and entrancement. Further to that, the singing is treated as part of the total sound fabric more than placed out front as vocals often are, a move that again suggests a stronger preoccupation with texture than standard song form. That's not to suggest, however, that the group's not able to produce a good, solid dose of dreampop when it wants to, as “Ostara” makes clear.

January 2013 - Textura


"Golden Gardens - How Brave The Hunted Wolves"

You can reasonably expect to assume that a band who list their location as "Utopia" on Facebook are either going to be a Goldfrapp tribute act or, in one form or another, something would fall under the dreampop banner. As you're unlikely to find us featuring tribute acts, this should narrow things down further. From what we gather, the duo that make up Golden Gardens are based in the Seattle area, which is unlikely to be comparable to Utopia, but you never know. 'How Brave The Hunted Wolves' is their second full-length and taps into fantasy-land dreampop and the lighter side of shoegaze, although it does this in a very modern way and is speckled with innovative ideas.

Strangely, that Goldfrapp remark (one of their early singles was called 'Utopia') ends up fitting rather well, with Golden Gardens having a definite pop aspect to what they do that's not too distant from how that band sounded before they turned into a chart-storming electro-disco act, with 'Swirl' being particularly reminiscent. With a lot of shoegaze and dreampop (they refer to themselves as "dreamgaze") records, the lush sound is provided by overlaying guitars and sometimes synths and also a heavy use of delay and other effects pedals. Golden Gardens' approach is broader with the bass-heavy 'Flutter' seeming to incorporate a wider variety of techniques along with the tried and tested methods, as does the slightly gothic title-track.

There are more conventional "dreamgaze" songs here and they're expertly made. 'An Apparition' feels more traditional and could be from 1991, and the wispy 'Transparent Things' is pure ethereal bliss. A few more sinister twists and turns are included; 'Gemini' is particularly spooky and 'Alcove' sings of "dancing in this realm of hell". The standout 'Ostara' would make an ideal single choice and is quite stunning in its gentle waves. This haze carries on into the more upbeat 'Pearls Pierce The Mist', another man-of-the-match contender. Finishing, as many a decent album does, with an epic last track in 'A Sudden Violent Rainstorm', Golden Gardens leave you knowing that it's very unlikely that this will be your only venture into their swirling, magical world.
- The Sound of Confusion


"Curious What It Sounds Like When Quentin Tarantino Goes To Sleep?"

More times than not, genres are a pretty ambiguous thing. Someone stumbling upon "Fire Fly" by Childish Gambino might mistake the Stone Mountain, Ga. rapper as a West Coast native. And deathcore? You guessed it - not so death-oriented (typically.) However, the wispy, ghost-like dream affair of trippiness known only as Golden Gardens can and should be summarized by two little words: dream pop.
The Covers opens with "The Garden," a slow, slow, slow and mildly creepy/angelic song that basically floats for more than seven minutes. Ambient with a mega-dose of reverb, the tune doesn't really go anywhere ... but that's not really the point. It's soothing and minimalistic, with just the right bit of punch. And that's good, given the records intent. Don't expect to be blown away with technicality, but rather, absorb the layers and melodies and harmonies. It's really quite amazing.

Don't zone out too much, though. "The Loop" kicks things up with a fast snare and an assertive electric guitar that sounds borderline identical to something that would have been featured on the Kill Bill soundtrack. The ambience is still there, but the mood is lifted to a faster, twangier place where Quentin Tarantino thinks up plot lines (and probably sees things only in black and white.)

As a whole, The Covers is an impressive release from a band that summarizes its sound best on its Facebook page: "Dreamscapes and Anthems for Magical Minds." - Seattle Weekly


Discography

Reign - released October 21, 2016; self-released; currently available for streaming at https://goldengardens.bandcamp.com/album/reign.

Bellflower EP - released December 10, 2013; self-released; currently available for streaming at http://goldengardens.bandcamp.com/album/bellflower.

Narcissus EP - released June 11, 2013 on Neon Sigh, currently available for streaming at http://goldengardens.bandcamp.com/album/narcissus.

How Brave The Hunted Wolves - released November 13, 2012 on Neon Sigh, currently available for streaming at http://neonsigh.bandcamp.com/album/how-brave-the-hunted-wolves. *The track "Transparent Things" was the KEXP Song of the Day on 2/1/2013.

Between the Siren and the Amulet - released August 2011, currently available for streaming at http://goldengardens.bandcamp.com/album/between-the-siren-and-the-amulet.

The Somnambulist Remixes EP - released June 2011 on Automation Records.

Somnambulist EP - released December 2010, currently available for streaming at http://goldengardens.bandcamp.com/album/somnambulist-ep.

Photos

Bio

Aubrey Bramble, Gregg Neville, and Carl Germain are Golden Gardens, a mystical trio up from the nocturnal underground, weaving dreamscapes and anthems for magical minds. The project began as a duo with Bramble and Neville living on separate coasts - Bramble in Seattle and Neville in Tampa, FL. After file sharing their way to a debut EP (Somnambulist, out of print) and a subsequent small-run LP (Between the Siren and the Amulet), the growing demand for live shows and increased musical output became a catalyst to bring the two musicians together geographically. Neville moved to Seattle in early 2012, and with the addition of multi-instrumentalist Carl Germain in 2017, they’ve been persistently growing their following in the ethereal pop music scene.

Their most recent full-length release Reign (October 21, 2016) is a sharp and lustrously shimmering collection of etherpop, full of crystalline synths and glittery vocals contrasted with a razor-sharp edge of bright electric guitars. The band teamed up with producer Martin Feveyear (Mark Lanegan, Jesse Sykes, Mudhoney) on this effort, a bold and crisp 9-track exploration of personal power and fierce female archetypes. Moving from their bedrooms to a professional recording studio allowed for a more focused and polished point of view, giving them the room to further experiment with the sample-heavy and electronic sound captured by 2013's Narcissus and Bellflower EPs. The trio is currently at work on a new collection of songs, with a single expected later this year.

Golden Gardens' tracks have received radio love from around the globe on stations including 107.7 The End, WZBC Boston, WFNX Phoenix, Sydney's 94.5 FM, Munich's 92.4 FM, as well as the internationally-renowned listener-powered Seattle radio station KEXP 90.3 FM. Reign single "Extrasolar Heartbeat" was included on the August 2016 KEXP "Music That Matters;" tracks "Mirror of Silver" (single), "The Ghost of a Total Stranger" (Bellflower), and "Transparent Things" (How Brave the Hunted Wolves) have all been selected by John Richards for his Song of the Day podcast series on KEXP. "The Ghost of a Total Stranger" was featured on the Summer 2014 Under The Radar Magazine digital sampler and "Transparent Things" was also included on French Vice-subsidiary Hartzine's Summer 2012 mixtape. Golden Gardens has shared the stage with a number of national and international performers including ACTORS2:54, Sloucher, Juliana Barwick, Jen Wood, Nite Jewel, Ritualz, Jeremiah Green of Modest MouseINVSN, Lemolo, BALÚNSuzanne Perry of Love Spirals Downwards, Prom Queen, La Luz, NEGATIVLAND, Arc Iris, and Jason Webley.


"Undeniably enchanting and mythical soundscapes ... incredibly dreamy." - KEXP

"If you prefer unearthly gothic music that seasons the darkness with a vein of black-eyelinered romance, Seattle's own Golden Gardens should more than fill the bill. Reign, GG's newest full-length... does their heady live sound justice with a sterling Martin Feveyear production and a solid batch of dance tunes." - City Arts Magazine

"The Seattle-based duo’s dreamy, dark, ethereal pop would provide the perfect backdrop for [David] Lynch’s noirish scenes of mysterious goings-on in the dank forests of the Pacific Northwest." - The Seattle Times

"Aubrey Bramble’s spectral voice [is] the pitch-perfect soundtrack for an apocalyptic prom... Songs for empty cities, flashing lights, the rain turning into ice." - Nada Mucho

"Nearly equals Beach House for affecting, gothy/gauzy textures." - Kyle Fleck, The Stranger

"A welcome mixture of mystery and magic—some sort of love child of Phantogram and Purity Ring—equal parts beautiful and heartbreaking. " - Seattle Weekly


Band Members