Saturday, September 22, 2007

New Band to Obsess About

We saw the Mountain Goats play Thursday night at the Black Cat. A pretty totally awesome show, except that it only lasted a smidge more than an hour, and I think the crowd would've been happy to listen all night.


New favorite band? Maybe so... John Darnielle is primarily a storyteller, so he comes off as kind of a coffee shop songwriter-y type, except that he writes smarter, funnier, more pissed-off lyrics and whales on his poor acoustic guitar so hard it might put you off your latte. For example, they played this one ...


... and we all sang along gleefully. (I hope we all die!) They're funny as They Might Be Giants, literary as Stephin Merritt, angry as Elvis Costello, but with this crazy manic joy about them even when singing about divorce or heavy drinking. They can also be twee and clever and a little bit wistful...


Darnielle has apparently written hundreds of songs as the Mountain Goats since 1991, with many of the first decade recorded (deliberately) on a cheap boom-box and released only on cassette tape. It's only recently that he's consented to go into the studio and put together the more polished stuff you see above. So anyway, they're a fun band with lyrics worth getting lost in.

2 comments:

Jackie said...

I've heard "This Year" before and have been intrigued by the band (it's on my things to get from iTunes list -- anything in particular I should look for?): thanks for the personal testimonial.

Tim said...

Hey Jackie - yeah, I'm really liking The Sunset Tree, which is the one album I have. It seems like a good Mountain Goats gateway-drug -- it's the album with 'This Year' on it, and a bunch of other songs about his abusive step-father.

I also have a few tracks from Tallahassee, which are great too, but I've barely scratched the surface on his early stuff.

Let me know if you want to hear some tracks.