Rising, Pittsburgh-born, Austin-based singer/songwriter Danny Golden reportedly doesn’t quite remember how exactly he ended up in Austin: he spent a few years in Colorado playing bluegrass banjo; there was a stint in his hometown, writing and forming his style; and a stint couch surfing in Brooklyn while writing and recording his full-length debut. But at some point, he found himself behind the wheel of his Nissan, halfway between New York and Texas with the realization that although he didn’t know a soul there, it was the best place to be for his music.
Since heading to Austin, Golden has made a name for himself in city’s scene, playing with a backing band that features Black Pumas‘ and Matthew Logan Vasquez’s Spencer Garland (synths), White Denim‘s and Balmorhea‘s Jeff Olson (drums), and frequent collaborator PR Newman‘s Ben Brown (guitar). The John Michael Landon and David Ramierz co-produced EP Changes features Golden’s accomplished backing band — and it’s a follow up to 2018’s Old Love. “It’s been over two years since I last put out new music, and I felt that ‘I Can’t Change’ had to be the song to break the silence,” Golden says. “The period between my last record and now saw me dealing with a lot of changes in my life, and in my approach to making music; I don’t think that’s more evident anywhere than on ‘I Can’t Change.’”
“I Can’t Change’ immediately brings 120 Minutes MTV-era alt rock to mind: explosive drumming, alternating quiet verses and rousingly anthemic hooks, layered shoegazer meets grunge rock power chords paired with Golden’s plaintive and towering vocals. Interestingly, while centered around songwriting that’s simultaneously ironic and heartfelt, and informed by hard-fought and harder-won experience, “I Can’t Change” is the sort of song meant to be played defiantly and as loud as humanly possible.
“The song is an expressionistic postcard and a story of supplication,” Golden says. “You can agonize all you want about choices in your life, but either way, change is going to happen to you. Taking what’s dealt to you and allowing change within yourself determines your quality of existence. I think we all experience periods of listlessness and malaise, often when we’re seeking answers without knowing the questions. Recording ‘I Can’t Change’ was a chance for me to give lyrical and sonic form to feelings that had been too abstract to understand.”