We spoke with Brian Wahlstrom about his band Gods Of Mount Olympus. They will be releasing their Self-Titled album with Bird Attack Records on February 16th, 2018.
How come I still see Hornswaggled stickers around San Diego? Are you still putting them up?
Ha! I went through the last of the Hornswaggled stickers back in 2004. I think they made better quality stickers back then.
You guys recently played a Slabratory show at Soda Bar with Pulley, Skipjack, and Strike Twelve. Was that the first official show with the current lineup?
Yes, first show with Matt, third time playing the songs as a four piece.
How did Gods Of Mount Olympus form?
Paul Rucker and I met on a Europe tour with Joey Cape’s solo project, Bad Loud. Both huge fans of Billy Joel, we started jamming ‘Scenes at an Italian Restaurant’ during sound checks, and kept playing when we got home. A hotel in Mexico hired us to play a series of shows, mostly piano rock covers as a duo. (I met the owner at a piano bar in Cardiff) They put us up for 3 days every month, and we worked on our originals during the off time. At the same time we were looking for a guitarist, and I ran into Steve Morris at the grocery store by my house. We’ve known each other a long time, Unwritten Law took Hornswaggled out on our first tour in 2002. Somehow I convinced him to come jam with us, and he was a perfect fit. Finally, Matt Riddle joined last December. I ran into him at a show and think I emailed him the EP at 4am that night, hoping for the best. Thankfully he was into it, and finally had the lineup we’d been looking for.
Matt Riddle gave you guys 5 out of 5 stars on Facebook and said he wanted to jam with you…now he’s in the band. Is this how you join a band these days? See screen shot below.
Haha, yeah I guess this happened shortly after the night I gave him the EP. Honestly he’s the perfect fit for our sound and brings a whole new energy to the shows. In reality, I should have given his page 5 stars and asked him to join.
If I remember a while back you were a three piece band with no real name. How did you come up with the name Gods Of Mount Olympus?
I guess we’ve always embraced the idea that anyone can be anything they want to be, and that’s kind of what the band name means. Also, it’s a theme park somewhere in Wisconsin and we drove by it on a One Week tour and thought it was rad. Except we added the Gods part.
Last year you had your first release on One Week Records. How does the Bird Attack release differ from that?
Joey came up with a great concept called “One Week Oustsiders” in which OWR temporarily releases a record by an unsigned band to the members for free. The album is removed after a period of time, or if the band finds a new home for the record. Which is what happened with our EP. The music is the same, but this release is vinyl and full digital.
How did you guys end up putting out your latest release on Bird Attack?
I met Garrett at a show in San Diego and then again in Montreal at Pouzza Fest. We hit it off hanging out that whole weekend; he was into the record and offered to put it out. Bird Attack is the only label we sent it to and we are stoked that it worked out. They’re great people.
It seems like you have a lot of solo or historical music being brought into GOMO initially. Now that you’re a fully formed band what is the process like for you guys creating new songs?
We have new songs on deck, but haven’t had a chance to play live. Everyone in the band is creative and has been doing this long enough that it’s a pretty easy process. Generally I come up with piano riffs first, but everyone plays what they want from there.
Bird Attack has a really solid group of bands, will this lead to more touring for GOMO?
We sure hope so.
You guys all have extensive music backgrounds but what do you do when you’re not playing music?
We all have families and jobs, but still find time to get hammered. So, its fun.
What’s next for GOMO in 2018?
As many shows as possible, and recording a full length in the Fall.
Thanks Brian for taking the time and talking about Gods Of Mount Olympus!
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Interview by Ryan