The first time I saw Gobby perform, he was playing drums with Hype Williams during their perplexing set at Unsound Festival New York. After what felt like an eternity of the same clipped sample being repeated over and over, Hype Williams’ “Venice Dreamway” came on—it’s not quite free jazz, but it’s not not free jazz either. Gobby starting wilding on the drums, skittering his sticks across the set in a way that felt not far off from complete collapse. It was my personal favorite moment of the entire festival. Gobby’s music on its own occupies a space that’s kind of hard to explain. It’s sort of lo-fi, sort of outsider art (the pixelated cover above should back that up), but with an extreme pop sensibility. On the five-song excerpt from his upcoming Above Ground, which will be out Monday, October 29th on UNO and is streaming below, Gobby makes tiny, sometimes wacky epics from what sounds like degrading equipment. “Theme For Money Go Deli” would be overly dramatic, if it weren’t so rickety and unstable. But that’s what makes Gobby so interesting. Clearly an incredibly accomplished musician, he’s less obsessed with showing his technical prowess than creating a fragmented, weird world. Some of this stuff is strange, yeah, but it’s also beautiful and homemade and honest.
Gobby, Above Ground Excerpt