Indie rock outfit In Good Hands, who hail from four different corners of North-Western Sydney, have recently released their third single Feel This Way and played a stellar gig to celebrate at The Great Club in Marrickville.
The clock displayed 10pm as the lights dimmed. The atmosphere became alive with excitement as guitars were slung over shoulders and the clacking of drumsticks rang through the buzzing venue. From the first chord that lead singer and rhythm guitarist Jack Kenyon strummed, the crowd was totally engaged for the next hour of top tunes.
The warm angst of Jack’s vocals provided a wonderful tone the entire night; meanwhile, lead guitarist Jayden Hall effortlessly danced his hands across the neck of his guitar. Drummer Simon Godbehere proved why his bandmates call him a human metronome, and bassist Harry Archbold diligently delivered slick basslines. The audience’s energy was infectious through the set, smiles never too far from the faces of the four musicians.
Being raised in Pitt Town, Kellyville, Riverstone and Quakers Hill, each member of In Good Hands has brought a wide number of local friends and family to the show, all excited to bring their support to Sydney’s Inner West.
The history of In Good Hands is present in how comfortable they are playing together. The band started practising in 2019 after Jack, Harry and Simon had been in another group together. “I thought we played really well together, and I had a few songs I wanted to play with a band as well,” Jack says.
Officially launching in 2020, In Good Hands was to have their first gig on March 21st of that year – the same weekend the first COVID lockdown came into effect. Although the band was able to play some gigs after this, the second lockdown clouded the future in uncertainty. Simon comments: “A few false starts, you start to feel deflated.”
After releasing their debut single Lately the year prior, In Good Hands started 2022 by introducing Jayden to the band, who had known Harry previously and met the whole band at a wedding. “He was the first name that popped up to replace our lead,” says Harry. “We knew he could play alright.”
Since Jayden’s addition to the band, In Good Hands have released two singles, including the recently released Feel This Way. Written to reflect the feeling of a fractured family dynamic, the song is equal parts melancholic and anthemic thanks to a catchy riff and vulnerable centre.
It was the riff that came first to Jack when writing, followed by the hook: “The riff was an arpeggio I discovered, and I fitted chords around that. When I’m writing songs, I’m always thinking about hooks, all the time. So normally if I get a hook, I write around that, rather than writing it from start to finish.”
When the song came on deep into In Good Hands’ hour-long set, the audience full of enthusiastic supporters recited all the lyrics of the song back to the band while throwing their hands up; a moment that Jayden described as awesome.
That energy from the crowd gives the quartet inspiration to create music, despite packed full-time schedules. “I think we all do a good job of balancing,” comments Jayden, “But it’s still a challenge. We meet up at least once a week, but going into creative mode after a full day of work, trying to get the juices flowing at nighttime, it can be difficult.”
Despite that difficulty, music is a refreshing outlet for all of In Good Hands. “The thing for me, it’s just the love of music, the love of creating, the craft of it,” says Simon. “Being able to build something, look back on it and be proud of it, that’s what drives me.“
As the last notes of their “cult classic” single Lately echo through The Great Club, the crowd isn’t ready for the show to be over. They chant for “One more song!” The four looked at each other, checking the time to ensure they hadn’t gone over their 11’o’clock curfew. 10:56 pm – enough time for one more song.
It was hard to tell that In Good Hands’ late-night rendition of Mamma Mia had been a late addition to the setlist, the boys still running through chords ten minutes before the show started. Regardless, everyone was ready to go again one last time as the venue came alive for the encore.
Without warning, the lights switched off. The band would find out that the photographer they hired had accidentally stepped on a power switch, casting the whole show into darkness. Jack, Jayden, Harry and Simon continued to play in the dark, when an audience member turned their phone flashlight on. Another followed suit, and then several more until a sea of lights shone brightly onto the stage, allowing perfect vision of the last moments of In Good Hands’ time on-stage.
After the show, the band agrees that the Feel This Way launch gig was one of the best gigs that they’ve ever played. Harry says: “It’s that energy. Being able to be such a big part of creating the vibe of the room… It’s really exciting. It just feels good to have mates jumping around and singing to songs that you made. We’re just there for a good time, and it seems like others are too.”