Founded in 2008 in Philadelphia, Good Old War members Keith Goodwin, Daniel Schwartz and Tim Arnold have already released three albums of very listenable indie-folk.
The term ‘listenable’ is often associated with the latest top 40 hits, but in this case it is a positive thing. Lead vocalist Schwartz’s clear, clean voice combined with a soft blend of guitar, accordion and keys produces the kind of music you can listen to anywhere, anytime.
It is hard to pinpoint what secret ingredient gives their music this kind of feel because there isn’t one instrument or sound that stands out. Their music is more of an amalgamation of sounds that work together to create a warm and consistently pleasant feeling.
“The kind of music we play doesn’t really have a genre,” said Schwartz. “We came from a desire to have a kind of positivity and enjoyment in our playing.”
And if you needed anything else to complete their resemblance to some of the great folk trios, Good Old War uses three-part harmonies in almost all their songs.
“When we started, we based ourselves off of mostly vocal bands like Crosby, Stills & Nash, The Kinks and the Zombies,” said Schwartz.
Good Old War has been on tour since the March 2012 release of their third album, Come Back As Rain.
“We’ve already played over 200 shows this year,” said Schwartz. “Sometimes it’s a little tiring because you don’t get any personal time whatsoever, but even when it’s at its worst, we’re happy to be here playing music.”
Before flying to Vancouver at the end of October, Good Old War was on tour with American rock band NEEDTOBREATHE.
“Every tour has it’s own feel because the fans are all different,” said Schwartz. “So far it’s been a totally different vibe with Xavier [Rudd]. The venues are a little smaller, but we like playing in giant places and tiny places. That and Canadian audiences are so much more polite.” Good Old War became good friends with Rudd when they played together in 2010.
And what should you expect if you choose to buy tickets to their Dec. 7 show at Metropolis? You can expect three very talented musicians who will play their hearts out.
“One thing people say all the time is that they can see how much fun we have on stage,” said Schwartz. “It’s not about, ‘Hey watch us,’ when we’re on stage. It’s about being together, singing together and being happy together. We always hope that the crowd will join in and sing along.”
It is the first time Good Old War will be performing in Montreal. It also happens to be the last city on this Canadian tour and potentially the last show for a while.
“We’re taking time off after this tour to work on the next album,” said Schwartz. So, if you need some encouragement for exams or just feel like absorbing some good vibes, give Good Old War a proper Montreal welcome when they come to Metropolis.
Good Old War plays Metropolis with Xavier Rudd on Friday, Dec. 7 at 8 p.m. Tickets range from $37 to $41.70.