Somehow it feels like a different world back in 2012 when Goat’s debut World Music was released in all its syncretic technicolour glory. Tapping into some of the hokey semi-ironic occultism that seems to surface with each wave of retro-revivalism, they threw in a slightly provocative blend of exoticism, drawing on influences from other musical cultures. Whether they were prepared for this to also be a relatively big commercial success is something we’re unlikely to find out from the purposefully mysterious group, who maintain anonymity in an effort to preserve the mythos.
Regardless of intent it wasn’t long before Goat were extremely high profile for what may have started as the side project of obscure Swedish psych-rock musicians. And with that has come some uneasy criticisms of what may be seen as cultural appropriation in their work. The band seem largely to have ridden this out however, and while I would like to hear more from them about their influences so that those with curious ears might dig deeper into the West African traditions, Ethio-jazz and afrobeat they tap into, I broadly feel that their intention is no more than making a good noise that pleases them...
Read the rest of the review here: The Sleeping Shamen