Their music doesn’t really sound like having temporal limitations and one could find it tricky to place them within certain geographic boundaries. You can have the image of a tribe dancing around the fire in the all-white Swedish North while listening sounds that could be coming out of Bollywood movies or from a street market in Rabat.
1. Talk To God 2. Words 3. Τhe Light Within 4. To Travel The Path Unknown 5. Goatchild 6. Goatslaves 7. Hide From The Sun 8. Bondye 9. Gathering Of Ancient Tribes
Release Date: 23 September 2014 Label: Rocket / Sub Pop Tracks To Notice: Talk To God, Gathering Of Ancient Tribes
It’s been already two years since Swedish group Goat released their enjoyable debut, but there are still plenty of mysteries and queries hanging around them. Only one of the members has revealed his name (Christian Johansson) and considering that other members have used names such as Bjorn Ulvaes (identical to the singer of Abba) or Snoopy Goaty Goat in some interviews, then maybe even this Christian is an imaginary one. They claim to be coming from a little village named Korpilombolo, this one truly exists and has a few hundred residents far in North Sweden, and they’re playing an similarly mysterious blend of psychedelic rock with influences from Asia or Africa.
Faces are missing as well, since they play their (extraordinary) gigs dressed from head to toe in impressing costumes and masks that add up to the atmosphere their music imposes. And when they’re asked how each one chooses a costume to wear for the night they playfully but apparently serious reply “we spin a bottle“. ‘Commune‘ solidifies their identity since they belong in a commune (be it Korpilombolo or the band’s close circle) and they definitely play world music. There are nine songs here, just as in their debut, but they could be heard as one continuous entity based in improvisation and soon enough they’re dragged inside their own rhythms sounding like those riffs will never stop. Opener ‘Talk To God‘ is such a case, being the only one that lasts longer than six minutes, along with the last one, ‘Gathering Of Ancient Tribes‘. Apart from the acronym in the latter, it’s also noticeable that the album starts and ends with a bell sound.
Music and style aside, ‘Commune‘ has a few things more in common with its predecessor. In their first release there were two songs titled as ‘Goatman‘ and ‘Goathead‘, while here we’re listening to ‘Goatchild‘ and ‘Goatslaves‘, and they’re saying that those tracks are “part of a puzzle not to be revealed yet“. Singer (of unknown name yet) sounds more like repeatedly screaming certain phrases than actually singing lyrics and when she’s combined with the also unknown male vocalist the fact that they’re not really harmonized fits their music approach. ‘To Travel The Path Unknown‘ begins with a spoken-word part, just as ‘Golden Dawn‘ that ended up being quite faster than the former.
There’s this story you’ve probably have heard or read about Korpilombolo and the witch doctor that visited and all this voodoo worshiping. It’s all around the web and it’s mostly connect with Goat band members speaking about it, but it ensures that the name of a god (‘Bondye‘) is not really an inappropriate song title here. ‘Commune‘ doesn’t lack good songs and for sure it doesn’t lack good music, but ‘Let It Bleed‘ or ‘Run To Your Mama‘ are still two of their best. Their music doesn’t really sound like having temporal limitations and one could find it tricky to place them within certain geographic boundaries. You can have the image of a tribe dancing around the fire in the all-white Swedish North while listening sounds that could be coming out of Bollywood movies or from a street market in Rabat. They describe this feeling and the whole band as “a bus full of guitars crashing upon a circus” and how could somebody disagree?