Normally when a band “returns to their roots” it’s a red flag. The band is obviously trying to recapture the magic they once had in their more formative years, pitching their new batch of tunes as old school and rawer. However, on the aptly titled Hello Destiny, Goldfinger has successfully transported themselves back to 1998. (Check out the bad ass artwork!)
It’s been some years and one massively disappointing album (Disconnection Notice) since Goldfinger had a presence in the punk rock scene. Although singer John Feldman has spent more time producing other more popular acts than focusing on his own band, this new batch of songs sounds fresh and alive. Original guitarist Charlie Paulson has returned to the band and his presence is immediately felt. The tracks are sharp and have recaptured the gritty and aggressive side of Goldfinger as heard on previously albums like Stomping Ground. Hell, they even bust out two ska tunes.
While all songs on Hello Destiny are solid, two tracks stand out. The first is “Not Amused,” a full on, fast and in your face punk jam sung by Paulson. It is easily one of the fastest and hardest songs the band has ever created. The second is “Handjobs for Jesus,” a confusing yet provocative track with an odd structure and numerous guest vocals.
Listening to this album is like a trip down memory lane but it’s not perfect. I simply don’t hear a catchy lead single in the vain of “Mable” or “Counting the Days.” The production is amazing but I would love to hear Feldman use a different snare tone for once in his career. And there’s an extremely out of place hidden track that borders on repulsive; how can you go from writing a song about suicide and animal liberation to a gentle and cheesy ode to your child?
For the fan that’s stuck with this band from the beginning, this album is a must but know that it’s only probably their fourth best album (behind Open Your Eyes, Goldfinger and Stomping Ground).