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THEIR music is so distinctive and hypnotic that it is impossible not to love Goodluck. The Cape Town electro swing and dance duo captured the attention of millions of fans with their first album, Taking It Easy. And now, three years since Goodluck debuted on the South African stage, they are bigger and better than ever before.
Ben Peters and Juliet Harding are the brilliant musicians behind the band, with Raiven Hansmann at live shows only. What’s impressive about the band is that they have performed more than 400 live shows in their short career.
Tonight tracked down Peters to learn more about their new album and the crazy adventure the band has been on for the past four years. Peters is loud, confident and friendly. As producer of the band, he says: “When I first started doing the project, it was my first album that I produced. I never worked in electro music before. And Goodluck had received three Sama nominations and five tracks off that album that went to number one, which made Goodluck number one in chart-topping singles off a debut album in South African history. It was a daunting process. We didn’t expect it be so good with the first album.”
He says the group have grown as musicians. After touring the world, Goodluck spent a lot of time in The Netherlands, which helped to develop their sound. He also says they have a huge following there.
Shedding light on their new album, Creatures of the Night, he says they wanted a different approach with this project. Goodluck fans will know that the band decided to record their new album in the Namibian desert. Watching the scenes of the making of the album on Top Billing, it was fascinating to learn that Goodluck incorporated the sounds of nature and wildlife into their latest collection.
He shares the experience: “We wanted to do something extraordinary with the album, that’s where the cherry on the cake comes in. I could see that the whole band was empty. We were exhausted after touring and doing so many live gigs. So I suggested we go to an environment that will inspire us.
“I did a little research and figured out the best place to go to is the Namibian desert. It’s the quietest place in the world. The idea was to go to the desert and take our gear and equipment there. So I got help with developing new solar technology that I needed for the power. We spent two weeks in the desert and recorded the entire album there.”
The guys also decided to take a film crew along to document the experience. They are releasing a feature-length documentary titled This Might Sound Crazy which showcases the production of the album in the Namib Desert.
“We were asked by Amsterdam Dance Event to come over and launch an exclusive movie to their panel. So we launched the doc to the press and that was the coolest thing. We had no idea what the feedback would be like but the press absolutely went crazy. The response has been amazing.”
Having watched Goodluck live, the band never disappoint. They are explosive, dynamic and energetic from start to finish.
I ask Peters how their sound has progressed over the years and what makes the new album different from the last? “It’s not an art album. It’s still our style of making music. It’s more mature and wiser and a lot darker. It’s heavier. That’s the European thing that we’ve taken. It’s still the Goodluck that our fans love.”
With their first performance at Live – The Venue on Saturday, Peters says he’s stoked to be at such a great venue: “There are so few left in the country. We’ve gone to the lengths of showcasing how we are as a live electronic band. So there will be a lot more instruments and equipment and a lot more new songs. So you guys can look forward to a really spectacular, polished show from us.”