GOAT – Headsoup

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Artist: GOAT

Album: Headsoup

Label: Rocket Recordings & Norman Records & Rough Trade Records

Release Date: 27/08/2021

Country: Sweden

Today we look at the mind-altering release Headsoup by Sweden’s GOAT. The album officially dropped today on Rocket Recordings, Norman Records and Rough Trade Records.

GOAT is a mysterious masked collective hailing from Norrbotten County, Sweden. They claim to be from a remote and cursed village of Korpilombo in northern Sweden, where inhabitants had for centuries been devoted to a form of voodoo introduced by a travelling witch doctor. Between their mythos and the unusual and almost entrancing nature of their music the collective has garnered wide spread attention since their 2012 debut. There’s nothing else quite like their unique blend of psychedelic jazz folk. Thrown into that already complex mix are elements of funk, afrobeat, blues, world music, dub, krautrock and pop.

Headsoup is a compilation album that is made up of non-album material from across their career, standalone singles, B-sides, digital edits and never before heard songs. Given the wide scope of the compilation you’ll find material from throughout their career so prepare for plenty of diverse music spanning multiple genres.

The best way to describe the album is transcendent. I say that because it transcends all genre and style boundaries and simply flows in whatever direction the band happen to fancy on any given track. No two songs sound the same and even within each track there’s a constant shifting of styles and influences. I also say that it’s transcendent due to the otherworldly psych elements that take the listener on a journey that transcends this plane of consciousness.

The band state that their music includes “jazz-flute solos, pounding Afrobeat rhythms, ferocious desert blues, drifting Ethio-jazz and churning drones.” All of this is true but still doesn’t capture the overall scope of their music. To list just a few, you’ll also find spacey dub elements, some seemingly Tuareg inspired guitar work and some truly captivating funk and psychedelic moments. You’ll be taken on a global journey with this album with influences spanning from Africa to the Middle East to Europe and even Latin America. There really is something for everyone here regardless of what style of music you happen to enjoy.

The sheer number of instruments present on this album alone is mind blowing. You have everything from jazz flutes to smooth silky saxophone and thick bass to various different guitars, all of the percussion instruments that are employed and much more. This isn’t even touching on the electronic elements sprinkled in all through the album that add a ton of additional depth.

Flowing over the top of all these instrumental and electronic influences are the soothing vocals of the dual high priestesses that are present in the collective. Somehow regardless of what style of music is playing these vocals manage to feel appropriate and are in fact amplified by the ever-shifting musical tide. They happen to stay the same but the change around them somehow gives them a shifting sound and energy throughout each track.

Overall, I have to say that this is one of the most interesting album’s I’ve heard in some time. Not many acts can incorporate this many elements and yet still have the album feel cohesive. If you want a truly unique listening experience, then give Head Soup a spin today.

Listen to and order the album:

Bandcamp

Spotify




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