When guitarist Joel Schneider co-founded his current band as a duo back in 2011, he and the drummer called it My Goodness because they loved the material so much they almost wanted to keep it to themselves.
Pardon the joke — but thank goodness they didn’t.
(My Goodness, before it became a trio.)
Now that the group has jelled into a punk-blues power trio with drummer Andy Lum (Craft Spells) and bassist Cody Votolato (Blood Brothers, Telekinesis), they are sharing their sweet goodness with the world at large.
“Shiver and Shake” (Votiv), released in June, has earned the trio some one-off “fly dates” to Boston, the Carolinas and Rochester, N.Y., as well as a spot on a national tour with Augustines. An upcoming West Coast tour includes San Francisco’s beloved dive bar Bottom of the Hill.
Before leaving town again, the ferocious trio played the Vera Project last week and on Saturday, Dec. 20, they’re at the Sunset.
Though Votolato — whose older brother, Rocky, is the popular Seattle singer-songwriter — had worked off and on with Schneider and Lum before, the band is now officially a trio, a development that seems to please all concerned.
“We have a lot more sound to work with now,” said Lum in a greenroom interview last weekend at Vera. “There’s just more energy on stage.”
Schneider, 29, grew up on the Eastside listening to punk and singing in jazz choir — he and Lum, also 29, both attended the prestigious International School — but in his early 20s acquired a serious jones for the blues.
“I think I was 21 or 22 and I walked into the Comet and the bartender was playing a Muddy Waters record,” he recalled. “Man, I just fell in love with the sound. Then I started writing.”
Schneider was especially intrigued by the open tunings of the blues. (See: Keith Richards, the Rolling Stones). You can hear an example on the deliciously dissonant fourth chord under the vocal on “Sweet Tooth,” one of the stronger songs on the new album, which bulges with big, willowy guitar chords, topped by Schneider’s throaty warble.
“Pay No Mind,” whose wry tone owes a debt to Mose Allison, is another highlight, as is the well-sung ballad, “Bottle.”
Schneider writes on acoustic guitar, which imbues his work with supple, blues-rock swing, reinforced by Lum’ s whiplash attack, which has more in common with Charlie Watts and Buddy Rich than Tommy Ramone.
But My Goodness never “feels like a bar rock band,” notes Votolato, 32. “The spirit behind this band is very punk rock.”
That’s a nice niche, one that could vault My Goodness to the next level, especially if Schneider’s songwriting continues to improve.
And goodness knows, it probably will.
My Goodness, Haunted Horses, Chrome Lakes
9 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 20, Sunset Tavern, 5433 Ballard Ave. N.W., Seattle; $12 (206-784-4880 or sunsettavern.com).