The Mountain Goats


FILE UNDER: Spritely tunes about dark music

ROCKS LIKE: Spoon, Prefab Sprout, Portastatic

WHAT’S DIFFERENT: The 16th full-length by this always reliable indie-pop project finds leader John Darnielle exploring the weird and wonderful world of goths, applying the same sort of arch yet empathetic songwriting eye to this subgroup as he has done with metalheads and tweakers on albums past. It goes long (the dozen songs add up to an hour of running time), but it cuts deep.

WHY YOU SHOULD CARE: True to their playful nature, the Goats’ music never really sounds, well, goth. Outside of the Sisters Of Mercy-esque spirit of the opening track, “Rain In Soho,” the album gets as jazzy, funky and chirpy as Darnielle’s spirit dictates with the fine addition of a horn section and Nashville backing vocals. Goths is one of Darnielle and co.’s most daring and well-conceived feats. 

OUR PICK: “Andrew Eldritch Is Moving Back To Leeds”