GOAT

support Papir
author BV date 19/09/14 venue Store Vega, Copenhagen, DEN

There are those weekends where the supply of great concerts is simply just too overwhelming. In such cases, one can go to any gig and possibly still feel like missing out because at least two or three other gigs were also played on that night, featuring bands one might like. For me, however, even though this is such a weekend, GOAT was the obvious choice of attendance. Having garnered a phenomenal reputation for their ”live rituals” I simply couldn’t see skipping out on it in favor of something else. Upon realizing that another favorite act of mine, Papir, would also grace the stage there was really nothing left to do but to haul myself and my huge expectations over to Store Vega – hoping that I wouldn’t subsequently feel like I had missed out on anything on this particular night.

All photos courtesy of: Peter Troest / troest.nu

Papir

I have previously given much praise to Papir as I genuinely believe that their mix of progressive post rock and psychedelic sounds is a staple of Danish instrumental music. With that in mind, I thought it was genuinely nice to see them on a large stage like the one in Store Vega. To my surprise, however, they started their set in front of a relative scarce audience – showing that the core group of Danish GOAT fans might have yet to become acquainted with the likes of Papir. However, one mere track into their set the crowd had transformed from scarce to grand – signifying, perhaps, that all that was needed to bring forth a crowd was the sound of live music after all. Now, Papir have never been known for small-talking or interacting much with the crowd and last night was definitely no exception, as the trio let the music do the talking with the exception of a few lines spoken here and there - for example one proclaiming the following to the crowd; ”we’re playing in the band Papir… up here. It’s nice to see that you all got here. We have merchandise - In a small booth where you can buy our LP’s. We’ll be manning it after our show…”. Monologues aside, Papir played their way through a solid 4-song set for the duration of approximately 40 minutes, taking the crowd on a musical journey through various corners of their discography which, as usual, included a flurry of guitar solos, thunderous bass-lines and highly inspired drumming. In spite of having seen better performances by the band, the effort was rock-solid and a very nice introduction to the band for those in the crowd who were experiencing Papir for the very first time.

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GOAT

Now, GOAT on the other hand was an entirely different matter. Following a relatively brief changeover, the ominous tones of GOAT’s dual guitars and the rumbling bass were filling up Store Vega. Tension was rising in the dimmed lights of the concert hall until the remaining members of GOAT appeared on stage to finally launch into a riveting opening track in the form of “Talk to God”. Equipped with various bells and percussion instruments, GOAT’s two female vocalists were frantically running and dancing around the stage when they weren’t chanting the track’s overtly simplistic lyrics, inciting various crowd responses and a general feeling of ecstasy. Following this particularly strong opening, GOAT kept both the temperature and the tempo on the rise with the introduction of “Let it Bleed” and “Gathering of Ancient Tribes” – leading into a very early example of maddening mayhem and enthralling euphoria from the band as well as the crowd. At this stage of the concert, or live ritual if you will, the drummer and the percussionist were particularly attention demanding as their captivating afrobeat sounds made up the very foundation of this heathen ritual, followed tightly by a bass so heavy, yet elegant that I still have a hard time comparing it to other bass players’ tones.

With “Dreambuilding”, “Goatlord” and “Diarabi” there were plenty of acid guitar solos to go around, transforming this unusually intriguing live ritual into a proper psychedelic freakout with all of the sounds that sort of thing usually entails – including the alluring, oddly sensual and reverb-drenched tribal chants coming from the female vocalists and the hypnotizing beats of the percussionist’s djembe. The combination of “Goathead” and “Goatslaves” proved to be a magnificent set highlight wherein GOAT’s affinity for tightly executed extended jams would take over and dominate the tracks, portraying a more playful side to the entity that is GOAT. How any band can perform as such a tight unit without ever being able to see each other’s facial expressions is far beyond my comprehension and, quite naturally, invokes a massive appreciation of that type of proceedings. Save for a few mishaps here and there, GOAT made an effort out of performing their live ritual with such tightness that very few seconds were wasted as they progressed from one track to another without ever uttering a word to the crowd – instead opting to show their appreciation via hand gestures and humble bowing.

As the show eventually seemed to culminate with “Words”, the vibe of the room was nearing a definite highpoint with most crowd-members having long since bowed down and embraced the proceedings – giving in to the rhythm, the atmosphere and the frantic dancing mostly done in front of the stage. “Words” eventually peaked with a complete mayhem of sound including wah-wah guitars, echo-oscillations, howling feedback and captivating percussion which, however briefly, ended to make way for the show’s encores; “Hide From the Sun” and “Det Som Aldrig Förändras”. As the sounds of the latter came towards their inevitable end, music was replaced firstly by silence, secondly by thunderous applause and finally by a lingering sense of euphoria in the crowd as we disappeared into the dark night, contemplating the completely maddening, yet superbly entertaining experience that is a GOAT show.

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Setlist:

  • 1. Talk to God
  • 2. Let it Bleed
  • 3. Gathering of Ancient Tribes
  • 4. The Light Within
  • 5. Disco Fever
  • 6. Dreambuilding
  • 7. Goatlord
  • 8. Diarabi
  • 9. Goatman
  • 10. Run to Your Mama
  • 11. Goathead
  • 12. Goatslaves
  • 13. Words

--Encore--

  • 14. Hide From the Sun
  • 15. Det Som Aldrig Förändras

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