“A New Technology” is the fourth track in our series of unreleased Gearbox material. I also asked Kalem Mahoney (vocals), Scott Hammond (guitar) and Stephen Tizzard (drums) about the legacy the band left behind.
You guys were a pretty influential group on the St. John’s scene in the 90’s and early 2000’s along with bands like Lizband, Fur Packed Action and others. I know my friends and I were big fans and were big inspirations for us to start our own band, Evenhanded. We were super pumped to play our first big live show opening for you guys once. Do you ever think about the legacy the band left behind and how you might have influenced other up and coming local musicians?
Stephen: I don’t really think much about that to be honest. I mean we were together over ten years, toured the country, released three full length albums, won some awards, and made a whole lot of noise opening for everyone from Greenday to Our Lady Peace to Hawksley Workman, but that kind of train of thought doesn’t seem to be a conscious one.
Scott: When you are so into doing your thing and you’re 20 years old you only see what’s directly in front of you. I guess once it ends you just look at it as being over. I may have felt different if we ended up touring the world as a ‘known’ band, but what is funny is that in the past few years I’ve had some people who I have the utmost respect for come up and say things like, “You guys were such an awesome band and I used to love coming to see you.” Or, “I was a huge fan of your guitar playing.” I think now that we’ve had time away from it those things mean so much more.
Stephen: We just did what we did and thankfully a lot of people liked it. I am so humbled to hear all these years later that people still do like it, such as yourself. We did some fairly influential things I guess. Turning Fergus O’Byrne into a semi-rock star was one (laughs) and bringing those few trad songs, with or without Fergus, to our live shows was new for us and the scene. I remember closing the Bannerman Park Folk Festival one year. I mean, a Rock band closing the festival?! Granted we played trad-rock songs with a stage full of amazing musicians backing us up but they all were rocking. Closing with “War like Lads of Russia” that year was just amazing actually. I guess that did pave a small road I suppose for other more alternative artists at the Folk Festival like Joel Plaskett, Hey Rosetta! and others. Not that we are solely responsible but our success playing it certainly didn’t hinder the broader range of genres that you see at the Folk Festival these days…which is just fantastic.
Kalem: I guess that fact that we were able to keep that whole thing rolling completely on our own at such a young age is something pretty cool. The touring, big shows, recording, the van….I guess we had a strong work ethic, even though it may have existed along with some pretty far out behavior. Guess we were only acting our age.