Physics was an instrumental band that featured a rotating cast of musicians, but was mainly composed of Jeff Coad on synths, Rob Crow on guitars, Jason Soares on guitars, Encinitas brothers Will Goff and John Goff on guitars/synths/bagpipes, and Cameron Jones on drums. Formed in late 1993, Physics was heavily influenced by krautrock, minimalism, and electronic music, though were often lumped into the math-rock genre.
"I think that Physics is kinda ambiguous," said guitarist John Goff in 2000. "It's not really a rock band. All of us have done the rock thing for long enough and we don't give a shit anymore, but it's not like an anti-rock band either...it's just kinda fucked-up weird music."
Their best show, according to Goff, was when only two guitarists and two keyboardists -- no drummer -- showed up. After one particular performance, a guy approached the band and said, "I fell asleep, but don't be insulted -- I fell asleep -- but it was really good." Two hours of obscure conversation with guitarist Jason Soares, including dips into quantum theory...brought about only one conclusion: they are as indie as indie can get.
"Personally I'm trying to redefine what makes a band in a modern time," says Soares. "I don't like the idea of a band. There are some problems with it, the first and foremost being is that it is a very product-orientated thing. What I would like to see happen is trying to gravitate towards a long-lasting way of appreciating music in a different sense."
For years, Soares ran his own little label, Negative Records. He released vinyl classics of Truman's Water, Powerdresser, and Three Mile Pilot. Goff has his own label too, The Way Out Sound. Physics did no marketing, no networking, no showcases. They released a compilation CD out on Flapping Jet Records and a CD with Gravity.
"I'm not against signing to a major [label]," said Goff. "If someone gave me a lot of money, I'd be fucking stoked."
Among other things, John Goff picked up an appreciation of this approach during a two-year tenure playing drums and bagpipes in San Diego's neotribalist collective Crash Worship. Honing his 'pipe skills with no less traditional an ensemble that that of Balboa Park's House of Scotland, he's also lent some skirting adornment to other arty local acts, including guest stints around town with Three Mile Pilot (he's featured on the first track of the group's second album).
Physics split up in 2000. Jason Soares and Jeff Coad went on to form the more electronic-based Aspects of Physics, with two releases on the imputor label. Will and John Goff went on to form the electronic band Sonic Solutions Inc, releasing albums like Pax Romana, E Pluribus Unum, and Resurrectionem Ex-Mortius on their label Chlorophyll Records.
John Goff also played with Johnny Superbad & the Bullet Catchers, as well as producing records by Rob Crow and Heavy Vegetable for his own Way Out Sound label and overseeing studio projects for the Nortec Collective. In 2016, Goff helped produce Noise, the experimental quartet that includes artist Shepard Fairey (known for his 2008 Obama “Hope” posters) and singer Merritt Lear, who has worked with Jason Mraz.