Before writing this review, I’d never heard of the Mountain Goats; it’s probably safe to say that neither have many of you. However, this is one band that should not go overlooked. They produce a sound that feels very bohemian, almost a mix of Jack Johnson, the]Postal Service and Iron & Wine – if one can even imagine that. The Mountain Goats is an indie rock band from California, releasing much of its music overseas, which might explain why we haven’t really heard of it. The lead singer, John Darnielle, also plays the guitar for a majority of this album. His voice is extremely unique and unconventional; it’s nasal, but not annoying and has a Damien Rice-like soothing quality to it.
Overall, the album is extremely well put together, although there aren’t very many tracks that stand out on their own. Darnielle incorporates classic instruments like the piano and violin in certain songs such as “Broom People” and “Dilaudid” to produce a sound that is different from “Lion’s Teeth,” which has a bolder feel to it.
One thing is for sure, Darnielle puts strong images in your mind by the time the three-minute song ends. Songs like “You or Your Memory” are lyrically random, whereas “Dance Music” tells a haunting story of domestic violence. The best part of the album is the fact that although he may be singing of troubling matters, Darnielle balances the mood by perking up the music.
[Luckily, the album has not inspired Amita Chollate to pick up a pesky tin can eating habit.]