Lockdown has seen may artists using the time to write and record new material, so it surely comes as no surprise that we have a new release from John Mouse. The Goat is the fifth full length album from John Mouse. I am sure many of you will have been following John’s music since the early days of JT Mouse with Sweet Baboo; if however, this your introduction to the man then I somewhat envy you.
As an entity The Goat serves as a timely reminder that when creative types are left to their own devices without the pressure to record, release and tour then we lucky listeners get something very special indeed to wrap our ears around. The recording process of The Goat was to write, record and release a song on a weekly basis, each song accompanied with its own artwork and uploaded to Bandcamp. The full digital version of this eleven track album is available now to download, with physical copies due at the end of August.
As a collection of songs The Goat can best be summed up as being dark, witty, uplifting, mysterious and heart warming. Yes, music really can do all those things at once! Le Pigeon opens the album with a tale of coming face to face with a Pigeon. It certainly will make me look twice and consider my relationship with those pigeons sitting on my garden bird feeder in the morning. “As I froze it moved, shifting its weight from one foot to another, that was enough for me, and I leapt back into my room, away from the Pigeon”. A Well-Planned Party envelopes you with swirling rhythms and melodies. Kerplunk Sticks tells the tale of coming face to face with someone entering your house and how you would deal with such a situation. The lyrics are dark and amusing accompanied by synths that will be sure to lift your mood. I especially love the part where John tells us that his teenage son entered the scene and started telling him about the time he pierced his sisters ear drum with a Kerplunk stick and John having to tell his son he had bigger problems to deal with right now.
We often find ourselves asking how do we define pop music in the modern world? So much has changed over the last twenty five years in how we listen and consume music. However, what equates to a great pop song in my mind has not changed. A pop song is one that uplifts you, makes you enjoy the moment you are living in, gets stuck inside your head and one that you return to over and over again. The People vs Charles Mitchlemore and Buy-to-Let Industry Expert both do exactly that and more. These are two songs that show there are artists out there still creating great pop music.
The Raven Argonette is a song set against a narrative of John taking someone up the mountain to drink from the mountain stream. This is definitely a reflective and confessional song which sees John taking revenge on a boy whose sister humiliated John during a game of strict poker. This narrative plays out over some wonderful uplifting sounds. O’Sullivan, Reardon, Doherty, Bond closes the album with some sweeping arrangements at the start of this eight minute song instantly drawing us in. The pace gradually picks up then explodes with some pounding bass and percussion guaranteeing our attention will be firmly held right until the end. The lyrics enter the mix in a dark and mysterious way which sees John telling the story of conflicts with the neighbors.
I seriously urge you not to let The Goat pass you by. Thankfully this album does not sit comfortably in any genre of music. It is an album that transcends musical boundaries and needs to be heard by as many people as possible.