Uber Rock - Goat Leaf & Zodiac N Black Interview
Jonny Maycock - Goat Leaf & Jad - Zodiac N Black - Uber Rock Endorsed Tour Interview Print E-mail
Written by Johnny H   
Saturday, 30 March 2013 03:30



Next month Uber Rock is proud to be associated with two of the finest underground bands the country has to offer in our first nationally endorsed tour. Yes Goat Leaf and Zodiac N Black will be playing five dates countrywide delivering no class rock ‘n’ roll for the minds of the masses. The band’s frontmen recently took some time out from tour rehearsals to chat with your truly, and here’s your chance to find out all about the hottest gig ticket you can buy this April.

Hey guys thanks for sparing some time ahead of you preparing to hit the road on your Uber Rock endorsed co headline tour that starts next month.

So let’s start by just asking you guys to explain who Goat Leaf and Zodiac N Black are, what you sound like etc. Because even though most of us at URHQ know who you are, many people have still to discover you guys

Jonny Maycock (Goat Leaf): It’s a pleasure. It’s cool you guys and girls are associating yourselves with the tour.

Goat Leaf takes influence from many things. Some of them are legal. Musically, we are pretty all over the place to be honest.  Monster Magnet, Pantera, GG Allin, The Stooges, Brant Bjork, Danzig. If you have a fuzz box and a groove, we will most likely dig it.

Jad (Zodiac N Black): It's always hard to describe the sound of a band, but what I would say is that both bands share the same idea that we both enjoy playing grooves that are heavy and make you want to shake your ass.

We take elements from all the bands we love and mix them all up and add our own flavour to it. We're also very influenced by the music we don't like. Both lists are endless. I mean, we're a hard rock band, so simplistically it's very easy for us to use Zeppelin and Sabbath as reference points and then add 40 more years of influences either side of them and I've managed to say nothing.


So what can people expect to get from seeing you guys on this upcoming five date tour? Other than ringing ears that is of course.

Jad: You'll expect to see two bands that are good, fresh and rock, for minimal charge in the areas we are playing and to have a great night out. Also, being endorsed by Uber Rock means that you are expecting the same out of it, I hope, as I doubt you would have put your name anywhere near the tour if it wasn't of a certain standard.

Tell us the story behind how this tour came together.

Jonny Maycock: Oh Johnny H - the real one (laughing) has worked his fingers to the bone in arranging the dates. He is truly a wizard.

Jad; Yeah I'd love to take any credit I can for this, but the truth is that when we toured with Warrior Soul last year, everyone got on really well with John (guitar Warrior Soul and Goat Leaf). We stayed in touch after that tour was over and when he phoned me about the possibility of doing a mini tour with Goat Leaf, it was more of an order than a question. And Zodiac N Black had no other option but to say "yes, see you in Nottingham on the first date".

I can't understate the amount that John has done, so, it's pretty much down to him.

And you’re adding local supports on at each night so I’m told?

Jad; Yeah that's correct, I believe we are in the final stages of confirming who they are for each town.

Jonny Maycock: I can probably help here, so far we have The Coyote Mad Seeds opening in Nottingham, your mates Trigger McPoopshute in Abertillery and PaperBeatsRock at Edinburgh. There will be others along the way, as yet unconfirmed.

That’s a really “punk rock” way of putting together a tour (for want of a better phrase), and although we do get to share the poster space with you guys, credit to you for having the get up and go to do what you are doing. But what is it that makes you want to do this. Why not just accept the status quo?

Jonny Maycock: Fuck the status quo. It’s never been an option as far as the band goes. We do what we do because we love music. The cost of mainstream gigs for punters is ridiculous. This tour is a middle finger to all that, we are totally self funded, with no or little cash reward, just providing an evening of high quality, no class rock ‘n’ roll for the minds of the masses.

Jad: It's hard to accept anything that goes on in the music world right now. Both bands love playing live and why not get out there together? At least we are trying something, and all it takes is for the people of each place we play to come out and support two bands that you'll get something from if you give it a chance. There are lots of bands out there that expect everything to come to them rather than going after it themselves.

Also, we love playing live. There are too many "bands" out there, that sit in a bedroom, make an album that they layer over and over again and then when they come to play it live, they must learn how the songs go and you go and see them play, you've enjoyed the album but the live experience is shockingly bad. And the reason is that they haven't got there shit together as a 3, 4, 5, 6 piece etc......With ourselves and Goat Leaf, we are both predominantly live bands. So, when you come and see us both, you'll get something passionate and executed well.


So Jad with regards to Zodiac N Black it’s been a year since Ross Welford declared your album “The best debut album from a British band in quite some time”. Firstly how does it sound to you a full twelve months on?

Jad: Must have been a bad year for debut albums then (laughing). No, seriously though, I think with every album that a band makes, you sit and dwell on the things that you could have done to make it better, as you're always striving to become better, if I listened to the album and thought, "oh my god, this is perfect", then it would be time to stop. Saying that, on the occasional time that songs come on from the album, it does make me proud. But, I don't sit at home listening to myself.

So what about a new album for this tour, do you have one in the pipeline?

Jad: We're working on new material at the moment and hopefully if everything comes together, we'll be recording in the summer. We're very self-aware of playing any new material until we feel we've pushed it to a certain level in rehearsals. The tour starts on April 18th and unfortunately due to work commitments the band won't reconvene until a few days before. But, saying that, it's music so you never know what we'll play on the tour until we get there.

As for touring you’ve worked with John before as you have said already touring with Warrior Soul, what was it like that tour, you seemed to be having a blast when we caught you in Cardiff.

Jad: We had a really good time hanging out together and I'm a big fan of John on the guitar.

And what night if any are you looking forward to most on this tour, I mean we all have our favourite venues, and you’ve certainly played a fair few in your time

Jad: Umm to be fair there is no night or venue that we are particularly looking forward to. We treat every show the same. We are looking forward to meeting and hanging out with you guys at Uber Rock at the show in Abertillery. But the aim for both bands is to blow every audience away in each venue and it's always fun when you play with a band that you appreciate and respect, because what happens is each band steps up their game.

And so to Goat Leaf and you Jonny Maycock – you’ve just released album number two ‘A Lack Of Oxygen’ that I called “ten tracks of aesthetically significant rock music in an age of ever growing musical mediocrity”. I guess you’re pleased with how this album turned out?

Jonny Maycock: We are very hard to please. Steve Ellis at Orion Studios and Jaime Gomez Arellano gave us what we asked for in recording/producing the album and then exceeded our expectations. It’s a record that doesn’t sit in with a specific rock genre. We have never worried about fitting into a pigeonhole and ‘A Lack Of Oxygen’ sounds like nothing in the UK at the moment. It's a beautiful freak of an album.

And this tour is an extension of that sound?

Jonny Maycock: It most certainly is.  DIY rock 'n' roll.


I hear you’ve also been going great guns on digital platforms recently selling the album - that seems a bit at odds with your more organic sense of creativity if you don’t mind me saying.

Jonny Maycock: Well, it’s the 21st Century. If the format lessened the impact of our songs, we wouldn’t release it. The actual creation of the album was wholly organic. There’s no compromise, just an awareness of different platforms and how the public consume their music

And I guess you’re looking forward to once again playing the Dolls House? Have you warned the Zodiac lads yet what this could end up like?

Jonny Maycock: Oh we loved playing at the last two Slugfests in Abertillery. The Dolls House is the sort of venue that just has that certain vibe and crowd that makes gigs there a total pleasure to play.

Jad: (butting in) Errrrrrr.......... I think I will need an explanation for this question. Sounds ominous (laughing).


Okay just to finish off I’m not sure if you are aware of this but Uber Rock’s very own Gaz E co wrote a murder mystery novel recently with Tom Spencer from The Loyalties that sits as a companion piece to their album ‘Til The Death Of Rock ‘n’ Roll’. Anyway said book revolves around a story of a murder on a tour bus. So in topical fashion my final question to you is five nights on a tour bus together – who do you want to kill and why?

Jonny Maycock: Due to my snoring, erratic sleeping patterns and general demeanor, I would say it’ll be murder for everyone else (laughing).

Jad: (also laughing) Five nights on a tour bus, two bands with four members in each band. I'd obviously exclude myself so that'd be seven murders committed on the final night after the final show. Well we couldn't do it any earlier as that would just ruin the tour, but get great press!. Seriously though I couldn't single anyone out as I wouldn't have a reason to, but that may change once we're there. So, from my standpoint, equal opportunities for everyone to be murdered.

Thanks guys for your time, and thank you also for asking us to get involved with this tour, we look forward to spending some time with you on the road in April.

Jad: Thank you.

Jonny Maycock: Thanks a lot. We’ll keep a glass of Jim Beam ready for you in Abertillery.



Brothers and Sisters, punks and freaks, gather round ye weary children of the united freakdom. The kick ass Rock ’n’ Roll touting merchants of Uber Rock present for your audiovisual pleasure, Goat Leaf & Zodiac N Black.

Five evenings of Rock ‘n’ Roll fury, delivered direct to your greasy faces as a bite sized chunk of awesomeness. Two cacophonous quartets, tapped into kindred musical territories but radiating two very different aromas.

Each night is set to be a monumental explosion of sound waves that will energise all the natives in attendance. So, thumb a ride, steal a car, mark these dates in your diaries, and we’ll see you fuckers there!

Remember, Zodiac like the killer, Goat like horny weed.

These following fine upstanding venues shall be playing host to this psychosis fuelled saga… Now use the Facebook events page links to spread the muthafucking word suckers!

April 2013

18th Pit & Pendulum - Nottingham - England


19th Bannermans - Edinburgh - Scotland


20th South Sea - Sheffield – England


21st The Dolls House - Abertillery – Wales


22nd The 12Bar Club - London - England 


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