Mister Goblin - Final Boy - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Mister Goblin - Final Boy

by Florian Meissner Rating:6 Release Date:2018-12-07
Mister Goblin - Final Boy
Mister Goblin - Final Boy

If you hear Mister Goblin for the first time, you might feel like you’ve heard the voice before. And you have: Mister Goblin, aka Sam Woodring, is the former vocalist and guitarist of Maryland-based rock outfit “Two Inch Astronaut”, who announced their indefinite hiatus this summer – much to the dismay of their fan base. However, with Mister Goblin, fans of Two Inch Astronaut can enjoy a slightly poppier, folkier version of their favourite band.

The opening track, “Be Right There”, was the first single of the debut solo EP titled “Final Boy” – and it pretty much sets the tone for the whole 5-song release. There are no surprises and no experiments, but simple, down-to-earth folk-pop. On first listening, bands like Dinosaur Jr., slow Smashing Pumpkins, and unplugged Nirvana come to mind, with some touches of Lord Huron along the way. Sam’s voice is accompanied by drums and guitars, but nothing too loud. The bass line is generally quite soothing and chilled, offering a steady foundation to the almost dreamy soundscapes the guitars explore. “Nothing You Do (Happens)” is the only song that really sticks out a bit: with just over five minutes it’s the longest track on the album. Slow, melodic guitar parts are mixed up with faster, J Mascis-style passages, and Mister Goblin almost shouts out his disappointment at how nothing he does appeals to his implied recipient.
It’s fitting that this song should be the middle song of the EP. The follow-up, “Option Vampire”, is back in the groove of the second song titled “Night Lighting”: rocky pop-songs with an indie-rock feeling to them, reminiscent of Nirvana’s slower songs. You can almost imagine Kurt Cobain’s raspy “New York Unplugged”-voice singing along – and it might have made the songs a bit more interesting, to be honest. With “Fixing the Jokes”, Sam ends his first debut EP on a pretty solid, rocky, and catchy pop-tune that is especially interesting thanks to the drone-like bass parts during the refrain.

All in all, “Final Boy” is a solid debut EP with highs and lows. “Night Lighting” and “Option Vampire” are pretty generic pop songs which are just a bit too unexciting to be more than background noise. However, songs like “Nothing You Do (Happens)”, “Be Right There”, and “Fixing The Jokes” show that Sam Woodring is an excellent songwriter who understands his craft. Only time will tell what Mister Goblin turns into, but this EP is a pretty decent start for a promising solo career.

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