Interview: Love, Good Vibes (And A Bit Of Death And Decay) With Psych Lords GOAT
We're not worthy!
Music 6m

We got what we could out of the ever-elusive Goat.

The way I see it, there are three categories of people in this world; those who love Goat, those who hate Goat, and those who haven’t heard Goat. If you fall into any category other than the first, you are probably not going to think much of the answers provided in the interview below with the Goat member who called themselves Gävlebocken.

For us “first category” people who are mesmerised by Goat’s riffery, hypnotised by their percussion-heavy rhythms, and electrified by their wailing vocals, just knowing that some part of of the enigmatic group is still alive and kicking will satisfy us. Probably in more ways than some overly intellectualised responses to a few surface-level emailed questions ever could.

The last sign of life from the masked minstrels was their standalone singles ‘Friday, Pt. 1’ and ‘Let It Burn’, the latter of which was used in Killing Gävle – a documentary about a straw goat that is constructed annually in a small Swedish town and set on fire or destroyed by mischievous pagans. Much to the delight of fans, ‘Let It Burn’ also marked Goat’s return to fuzzy rock, after their 2016 “folk record” Requiem.

Since then it has been quiet on the Goat front, which may be due to their guitarist “Goatman” releasing a record of his own, or perhaps his record (titled Rhythms) was reactionary to the unavailability of the rest of the group. Either way, a live record and a couple of singles, despite their brilliance, isn’t enough to keep us diehards going. We tracked down the band to try and find out when we’ll be hearing some new music, what they’ve been up to, and when they’ll be back to Australia. Here’s what Gävlebocken had to say:

It’s been pretty quiet from Goat lately, how have you been keeping busy?

Leisure time man. Being with friends / family. Traveling. Listening to music. Reading quite a bit also. Just finished Lord Of The Dance, what a precious biography! Rejoicing!

Many of us Goat fans were pretty excited to hear new music last year. It felt like ‘Let It Burn’ sounded more like older Goat, whilst ‘Friday Pt. 1’ was more like something from Goatman or Requiem. Are either of these songs an indication of what is to come from Goat?

Thank you! ‘Let It Burn’ is a great song. ‘Friday Pt 1’ is not so good. I would hope that the next album, if there ever is one, would lean more towards ‘Let it Burn’. As you probably understand that would make most sense to me. But who knows how things work out in the end, right?

Was contributing to Killing Gävle important to the band? I take it you are all for the burning of the straw goat. Why so?

Yes very important. The director is a true beast of a human being. Beast in the most positive sense of the word. A true gentle soul and beautiful person. A master of his craft. We are very happy to have met and worked with him.

Privacy and anonymity is something that Goat members seem to take pretty seriously. What do you think would be lost if Goat were more open about their identity?

Privacy and anonymity.

The writing process for Goat sounds like it involves a lot of jamming/improvisation. How much of what we have heard on the records is spontaneous?

Most of it. Some stuff has been passed down through generations though.

What sort of area does all this creation happen in? I’m imagining a huge hall with instruments and recording equipment ready to capture the magic. Can you describe the space?

It’s in the worst area of Korpilombolo. It’s basically an old shrine with a small studio in it. Also there is a small kitchenette and the infamous pissoir. Spooky as hell.

I’ve read that there are hundreds of members in Goat. Is this true?

Yes of course it’s true.

For people that have never heard of Goat, which word best describes it; a band, a religion, a cult, a family? Why?

I would say some eclectic type of food definitely, cross kitchen stuff. A little bit of this and a little bit of that made with loads of love. Why? Because food is essential for most people. And so is Goat, at least that is what they say ;)

Or that we sound like AC/DC.

There is a ritualistic nature to live performances from Goat. How spiritual is playing live to the members of Goat?

Very uplifting! We just want to spread love and good vibes. And a bit of death and decay.

You’ve only toured Australia once with King Gizzard And The Lizard Wizard. What did you think of Australia? What do you think King Gizz?

Actually we have been over twice. The first tour we were opening for Midnight Oil. It was really nice.

Australia is a Beautiful beautiful country. What a scenery! Also a bit weird, to fly as far as that, and find that the majority speaks English and look like Londoners. King Gizzard Rules, what a great band!! Great Live band. Just awesome people. Ace!

I mean most people struggle to make one decent album in a year if they are lucky and they made what, like 21 albums in one year?!! All of them equally relevant and good although my fave is the microtonal one. But that kind of thing is unheard of, 54 albums in a year (!) who even does that? respect!

The best Australian band of all time is Sadistik Exekution! Magus is the best album in the world. The most psychedelic also. Profound lyrics.

Can we expect to hear new Goat in 2019?

Who knows really :)

Is there any way we could get you back to Australia?

Massive amounts of cold hard cash, preferably USD hahaha. Thank you
We love you all!

Words by Harry Webber March 11, 2019
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