Too clever for the mainstream, GONETCHA released a string of acclaimed records, and covered a lot of artistic ground over their five albums – Métro de Pensées, Mission, Fickle Games, Pragmatic and their latest, “Instincts”. Re-listening to the band’s catalog, I’ve noticed how detailed and packed with ideas their albums are. Launched in Lyon, France, by a bass player, GONETCHA is an alternative rock project that started out in 2017. They are an intelligent group, brimming with good tunes and interesting ideas. Their bass-driven sound is a great window dressing for the group’s inherent hooks and melodies, and enhances the listening experience.
While these songs are dressed up in bass dominated production, deep-voiced vocals and loud guitars, they are often surprisingly catchy. Sounding most like a single is opener “Au Revoir les Enfants” with an insistent melody, slap-bass and banging drums, driven by gutsy guitars.
“A l’Agonie” rides a funky psychedelic groove, while ‘Visions’ is driving, direct and memorable. “J’ai dit Non” is another bass fest with a fantastic rhythm, vocal hook and chord progression.
“Momentum” is exactly what the title describes, as the track launches forward from the get-go and never lets up as pulsating basslines crisscross the rhythm. Choosing a favorite song out of the bunch is a difficult task; as they’re all quite excellent in their own right.
“Bonne Ecole” comes out of the blocks with a marching beat and angular guitars with the usual thumping bassline not far behind. “Secrets d’Histoire” ushers in an infectious slapped bass that stands among the band’s catchiest and crunchiest. The fuzzy earworm riff blazes through the speakers as the vocals unleash a layered chant.
That said, GONETCHA has a talent for crafting hooky, anthemic alt-rock songs when it so pleases them, and which they do ever so nicely on the hip-swaying grooves of “Go Home” and “Encore Ouvertes”. Essentially GONETCHA is underground music’s best kept secret – an indie band that the casual music listener might not even know exists.
Stylistically, they really carve out their own path. GONETCHA possess that uncanny talent of effortlessly spawning some of the most tantalizing bass-driven beats out there. All the songs feed off of the band’s most fundamental aspects, such as the chanting vocals, the wailing guitars, and a very original approach to music.
A prime example is the cleverly ambiguous rocker “Ease The Pain”, which combines GONETCHA’s quirky energy, underscored by an equally catchy melody, and shards of jagged guitar. It’s hard not to be swept away by the song’s seductive beat. GONETCHA definitely show that they have immense talent that cannot be boxed in.
On every passing track, it never feels like the band doesn’t have a new trick hidden up their sleeves. Songs like “On Holidays” and “La Lumière” demonstrates some of the most astute songwriting and unadulterated musical dexterity.
All-round GONETCHA take an eclectic left-field sound and makes it completely infectious and enjoyable. Not many artists can do that. “Instincts” is a remarkable release, showing a solid group with their ideas fully formed, and a bunch of really great songs. To put it mildly, this is a big album for alternative indie rock.