Vancouver’s No Gold: More than just great music

No Gold breathes in the scents of Vancouver’s Chinatown. Supplied

Jack Juston’s creative output as part of Vancouver band No Gold is more than just playing picturesque tunes sparked with hip moving beats. He believes it is a more general undertaking.

“I don’t see any point in trying to compartmentalize (creative endeavours) in your life,” he says. “My creative output must have some relationship to what I eat and who I talk to.”

No Gold is composed of Jack Juston, Liam Butler, and synth/sampler wizard Ian Wyatt. All three play multiple instruments on stage and share vocals.

Currently touring Canada in support of its debut disc, the band has seen its share of challenges behind the scenes, as a lack of jam spaces has prevented the debut from coming out until this year.

In an interview with, it was revealed that the band’s first practice space burned down, while the second jam space in Butler’s dad’s garage was sold.

All of this helped to postpone the recording of the disc, which may have been a blessing in disguise.

“I don’t think we’ve had a harder run at it than anyone else,” Juston says. “I’m not sure I’d be happy with it if we had recorded (the record) a year earlier. Recording it when we did was a really enjoyable experience.”

The experience was very much based on their live material, as the record was recorded live off the floor to capture the feel of the live sound. On the LP there are only a few overdubs on vocals.

“We were always recording everything we were doing,” he says. “We’d put it in this folder and revisit it. It would allow us to re-explore and expand on certain things.”

Songwriting is evenly divided between all three members and the creation process involves a lot of jamming.

“One of the most fun things about making music with friends is just getting in there and making noises and being loud and seeing what happens.” 

The disc was released in February of this year to critical acclaim. According to Exclaim’s review, No Gold is “a band whose sonic identity shifts with each track,” and “is unclassifiably brilliant.”

Having played at numerous festivals including Pop Montreal, South by South West and the Sled Island Festival, No Gold has perfected the pulsating rhythms and animated noises that are necessary to get people up and moving.

“I think a lot of rhythmic music should be experienced physically by the audience,” he says.

Published in Volume 66, Number 12 of The Uniter (November 17, 2011)

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