In the age of the Internet, we are all infinite. But you and I are not as infinite as Biquette, the world famous grindcore goat. Who was Biquette? You may have seen photos of her floating around the Internet for the last few years; BuzzFeed posted some under the header, “Punk Rock Goat.” To put it plainly, Biquette was a goat who loved grindcore. She lived on a farm-cum-DIY space in Mauriac, France, where she made friends with touring acts and, from what I’m told, just about everyone who passed through.
These photos were taken during a show played by a band called Wormrot and became a minor viral sensation for the simple reason that it’s really, really funny to look at a goat standing in the front row of a punk show. For all the self-seriousness that DIY sometimes involves, there’s probably no better way to have a laugh than by looking in the audience and seeing a goat soaking up the rock. There’s a video of Wormrot playing with Biquette in attendance, and it’s pretty great; the members of the band are smiling as Biquette stands there without a care in the world.
I forget how, but I was linked to a Facebook page in December noting that Biquette had passed away earlier that month. Intrigued, I tracked down the e-mail address of Flo, a woman who helps put on shows at Mauriac and pinged her with a few questions about what Biquette’s life was like. Because if the world is about stories, no one deserves to have their story told more than a goat who truly loved grindcore. [Note: Flo’s answers were translated from French, so the exact wording is sometimes confused. For example, Biquette is the name of the goat, but biquette with a lower-case b is a French word that roughly translates to a young female goat; essentially, her name was Goat the goat, which is wonderful.]
Noisey: Could explain what Mauriac is for our readers?
Flo: Mauriac is a little farm that people have lived at for about 10 years and that has seen a bunch of people come through! Some people came to spend a little time, others were as much a part of the house as the stones and there were also all those who came to see/perform concerts and festivals at the house. Now it's a whole new team that lives there and handles things, but what's for sure is that for a heap of people who came there, Mauriac will always be the house.
What do you do at Mauriac?
My name is Flo. I lived at Mauriac for a few months here and there to try to repair my vehicles and organize some concerts from time to time. I came to Mauriac for the first time ten years ago because [my car] broke down… and I still am!
When did you first meet Biquette?
Biquette arrived at Mauriac because she "worked" before that in a milking factory, and since for those old bosses it cost less to hand her off than to give her to a slaughterhouse, she barely escaped the slaughterhouse and landed with us.
How old was she?
Biquette (peace to her soul!) was 10 years old (like the farm), 5 years in the factory and 5 years in front of the stage!!!
When did you first notice she enjoyed attending the shows?
While she was here, she always loved concerts, settings with lots of people. As soon as there was someone she had never seen, she stuck up against them for an hour! And when there were lots of people, it was above all a chance to go steal a little tobacco or something else that was lying around!
Were there any bands or music she particularly liked?
I remember that during Panzer Cardinal (a band from Toulouse) she spent the entire set at the bassist's feet (who, by the way, was hallucinating a bit). She was most connected to grind (it seems weird to talk like this about a biquette but nevertheless it's true!!!). Seeing as the barn floor where we throw the concerts is wooden, I think that she felt the vibrations in her hooves. The majority of the time she even laid down next to the speakers.
How would the bands react?
So the reactions, we've had them all! The majority of people were amused, curious, but we also had some "it's disgusting to do that to a poor animal that didn't choose to be there, why don't you close her up during the concerts?" Well, look! If she wanted to leave from in front of the stage, she would have done it all by herself! And otherwise the thing that came back fairly often was the song dedicated to Biquette. In fact, I believe that's what Wormrot did.
What was her favorite food?
Number one: tobacco!!!! In all its forms (butts from the ashtray, lit cig in your hand....)
And more generally a little bit of all the stuff lying around. She consumed a decent amount of the bottom of pots of paint or oil drains too...it depended on the season. She drank alcohol pretty well too, of the sort of all the bottoms of glasses of bottles of booze that people hid in another part of the barn and that she managed to root out.
Do you know when she died, or why?
As far as what caused her death it's a big mystery. Certain people advanced the thesis of too brutal a change of rhythm after the complete cleaning of the site upon the arrival of the new people. Maybe she was missing scrap metal [Editor’s note: assume this is French for a type of metal subgenre] or something?! No, frankly, we don't know anything. What's for sure is that she burned the candle at both ends! This type of biquette normally lives 10 years longer. But "normally" and biquette, that makes two. "Live fast die young!!!"
Are there any other animals at Mauriac that like the bands?
There's only one Biquette!
There are many many many....dogs (perhaps fewer now). You know that here it's the country, so we've seen all kinds of animals come through. We even recovered a pigeon that fell from its nest and would come perch on the neck of my guitar when I played. We had to transfer it away to save its life because it was a little too friendly with the dogs.
Was Biquette a goat? I saw something referring to her as a sheep.
Biquette was a goat. A very special goat, but a goat.
Special thanks to fluent French speaker Kyle Kramer for the translation.
Follow Jeremy on Twitter: @jeremypgordon