“Are you guys with the band?” A pleasant passerby asked while we were loading out camera gear near the Goose tour bus parked outside Nashville’s Brooklyn Bowl.
“No, we’re just here to do an interview.” I responded.
“Oh man, tell the band that last night’s concert was uh-mazing,” exclaimed the joyous fan. “We’ll be talking about it for years to come.”
And with that sort of impassioned, infectious positivity, Goose is following the freeform footsteps of the Grateful Dead, Phish, Dave Matthews Band, and Umphrey’s McGee—where polished, recorded albums are secondary to improvisation-rich, snowflake-unique performances that illicit exchanges like that above. (Adding to their jam-band credit, they livestream most shows, and guitarist Peter Anspach mixes the band’s gigs for release shortly afterwards.)
Formed in 2014, the quintet currently includes: Peter Anspach (guitar, keys, vocals), Jeff Arevalo (percussion, vocals), Ben Atkind (drums), Rick Mitarotonda (guitar, lead vocals), and Trevor Weekz (bass). The Northeast-based crew has released two albums (2016’s Moon Cabin and 2021’s Shenanigans Nite Club), an EP (2020’s Night Lights), and Dripfield is on the horizon, for release on June 24.
However, the recorded songs are just guideposts and mile markers. It is all about the live experience. The band often performs two sets, without an opener, and keeps fans on their toes with natural, symbiotic excursions and unlikely, progressive covers. The first evening of their sold-out, two-night run in Nashville saw them flex their musical adeptness and vocabulary with covers of Wes Montgomery (“Switchin’”) and Steppenwolf (“Magic Carpet Ride”).
Their word-of-mouth growth has elevated them to cross several milestones in 2022. They sold out their first arena (Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Connecticut) and followed that with sell-outs at the legendary Red Rocks Amphitheatre and historic Radio City Music Hall. So you can plan on seeing these birds fly high for years to come.
Before Goose’s second sold-out show in Nashville, PG was invited onstage to catalog their current setups. In this Rundown, guitarists Peter Anspach and Rick Mitarotonda show off their all-night 6-string costars, detail the pedals that help them warp space and time for organic odysseys, and Mitarotonda explains how a looper helps him from hitting mental walls and getting cornered in redundant guitar-playing boxes.