What’s your relationship with 21st century globalization, and the way our current all-access-all-the-time media flattens context, distinction, and history? Do you retreat? Partition? Digest as much as you can, and then some? For Sweden’s Goat, the answers to these questions are twofold: you flood your world with as much audiovisual stimuli as possible, and raise an army of questions in the process.
How does the communal isolation of Goat’s Korpilombolo hometown inform the band’s boundary-free mélange of psych rock, krautrock, Scandinavian folk, and Afrobeat? Is the baroque-pop by-way-of King-Sunny-Ade in “Trouble In the Streets” a commentary on Goat’s West African dress? What process generates songs like “I Sing In Silence” and “Try My Robe,” peculiar feats in which Incredible String Band-esque finger-picking winds around propulsive basslines, djembe, and punky, shouted vocals? Did they give a tapestry of Persian acid-rock ambience a South African name—“Ubuntu”—just to fuck with us?
On Goat’s third album, Requiem, the roving collective casts the broadest possible net, anchoring all of their stylistic left turns with enough conviction to make them land, no matter how flittery the pan flute gets. In the end, Goat’s music becomes both a reflection of and an escape from the torrent of information that blankets us all.