Photo – Holly Whitaker
It was a special night, and somewhat of a rite of passage as Goat Girl sold out the legendary 100 Club.
No. 100 Oxford Street provides a basement home for a venue which has been hosting live music since 1942. Named Feldman Swing Club before changing hands and name in 1964 (originally a Jazz club), the venue has seen bands such as The Clash, Siouxie and the Banshees, The Jam and Buzzcocks grace it’s stage, whilst also having a helping hand in working punk music into the mainstream in the 70’s. Way back when, Hendrix and BB King also graced the stage and marked the venue as something truly special.
Like many venues, The 100 club has had it’s fair share of close shaves in terms of permanent closure. Nowadays, and on the night in question, it’s Fred Perry who step up and provide the venue with a huge night of new music in an unbeatable setting. The venue’s heritage and pull truly apparent with the sight of Jarvis Cocker behind the decks.
With their huge early November show at KOKO selling out, Goat Girl‘s show tonight seems something of a rite of passage. With new Heavenly Records signees audiobooks and ex-Goat Girl bassist Naima Bock supporting on the night, the evening provides heavy hitting entertainment at an entry fee of £5.
Opening was Naima Bock, her intimate and ghostly folk tales touching the souls of all of those sharp enough to get down early to witness a raw talent in the early stages of honing her craft. Her delicate vocal twists and turns, the harmonies soar and fall in unison, bathing in an understated elegance.
New Heavenly Records signees audiobooks released their debut record Now! (in a minute) in November. The eccentric, storybook-esque electronic project of David Wrench and Evangeline Ling seems to catch the crowd off guard. Wrench’s long white hair dances over bubbling, groove-laden synths, and Ling’s shy strut and storytelling vocal-style rages across a long 100 Club stage. By the time their set had finished, the crowd has been treated to an intense electronic wall of noise in Dealing With Hoarders, the left-field electro-pop strange of Hot Salt and surefire hit Dance Your Life Away. Part of the crowd in awe of their retro-inspired electro-pop, the other in sheer shock, the duo made their mark either way.
Even Goat Girl‘s album tracks go down as certified bangers these days, such is the appeal of the London band who have gigged like mad around the capital the last few years, before putting out their superb LP on Rough Trade Records in April.
On stage at the 100 Club the band power through a well-oiled set, punchier and more punk-influenced than ever. Goat Girl‘s seemingly relentless rise to becoming not only one of the capital’s, but the UK’s best new alternative hopes is apparent. Paving their own way, with a strong sense of self-direction both in music and their extra curricular. You get the impression that wherever this project goes, it will influence others down the line, in years to come this will be a reference point for newcomers.
Maybe America won’t get it, maybe they’ll become cult heroes in Asia, or maybe it all starts to fall apart at the seams. But it will, or has already influenced a new generation.
By Karl Johnson