Profile: mysterious masked prog rock collective Goat
Need-to-know facts about the Swedish band ahead of UK tour dates and release of new album Commune
Mysterious masked collective Goat are said to hail from the Arctic Circle settlement of Korpilombolo in northern Sweden. Historically a hotbed of voodoo worship, it was destroyed by Christian crusaders and cursed by its own people, yet endures as an open-minded meeting point for musical traditions from all over the world. Goat have existed for many years in many incarnations, playing the Swedish progressive rock handed down by their ancestors.
Based in Gothenburg, Goat were formed by mainman Christian Johansson, and number up to eight musicians, including two female singers who chant cathartically in unison. They first made their mark with debut album World Music in 2012, scared small children and delighted jaded music fans with their funkadelic set at Glastonbury in 2013 and are now back with a second album Commune which carries on the shamanic work.
Well, it’s not Ace of Bass, that’s for sure. More of a heady stew of various trance traditions, including psychedelia, Afrofunk and Krautrock. From urgent acid-fried dervish dances to hypnotic desert rockers, rhythm is the key.
Druid robes for the men, colourful kaftans for the women, elaborate tribal masks for all. The band says it’s all about making a connection to the music, not the individuals making the music, but we like to think it’s because it looks cool and freaky.
‘We often talk about how all music is world music,’ they say. ‘All you can hear is the universal similarity between all music.’
SWG3, Glasgow, Sun 28 Sep. Commune is released by Rocket Recordings on Mon 22 Sep.