Goat – Live Ballroom Ritual

Album Review by Sam Wiseman | 27 Nov 2013
Album title: Live Ballroom Ritual
Artist: Goat
Label: Rocket
Release date: 2 Dec

The release of this Swedish psych-rock collective’s debut World Music last year attracted a flurry of attention, not least because of the band’s cryptic interview style, and use of some wildly creepy masks and stage costumes in their live performances. In fact, the record’s blend of a funk rhythm section with plenty of wah-wah soloing, jangling chords and the odd drum solo lends itself perfectly to the stage; hence the release of this live LP, recorded at Camden’s Electric Ballroom.

Live Ballroom Ritual demonstrates the assuredness with which Goat blend folk, psych and funk into a frazzled melange onstage. While their recorded material is already marked by an air of looseness, there’s an even greater sense of cosmic abandon here; crucially, however, that’s tempered by a dynamic tautness. Ultimately, Goat’s magic lies in their intuitive meshing of influences in a way that gives their retro wig-outs a contemporary edge. [Sam Wiseman]