March 8, 2008

Noise Pop: The Mountain Goats day show at Bottom of the Hill

It always feels a bit weird to come in from the bright glorious Sunday afternoon sunshine for a day show, but the Noise Pop set with the The Mountain Goats at Bottom of the Hill last weekend was so good as to make it worthwhile for the packed, all-ages crowd. The Mountain Goats played a rarely-seen three-show run at Noise Pop and this was the last — a Sunday matinée, the early-bird special.

After this, I’m hands-down adding John Darnielle to my list of the best songwriters of our generation. The depth and emotional punch, and sheer beauty of these lyrics actually physically hurts at times.

You Or Your Memory (live in SF 3/2/08) – The Mountain Goats
(from 2005′s The Sunset Tree)

I checked into a bargain priced room on La Cienega
gazed out through the curtains of the parking lot
walked down to the corner store
just before nightfall in my bare feet
black tarry asphalt, soft and hot
and when I came back I spread out my supplies
on the counter by the sink
I looked myself right in the eyes

st. joseph’s baby aspirin
bartles and jaymes
and you
or your memory

I ducked behind the drapes when I saw the moon begin to rise
gathered in my loose ends switched off the light
and down there in the dark I can see the real truth about me
as clear as day
lord if I make it through tonight
then I will mend my ways
and walk the straight path to the end of my days

st. joseph’s baby aspirin
bartles and jaymes
and you
or your memory

So Desperate (live 3/2/08) – The Mountain Goats
(from the new album Heretic Pride)

We were parked in your car
in our neutral meeting place, the episcopalian churchyard
I had things I’d been meaning to say
but in the dazzling winter sun that late
I could feel them melt away

and through the warm radio static
I couldn’t hear my stage directions
and the fog on the windshield
obscured our sad reflections

I felt so desperate in your arms

we were parked near some trees
and the moonlight soaked the branches in ever-deepening degrees
had my hand in your hair
trying to keep my cool
‘til it became too much to bear

when we cracked the windows open
well the air was just so sweet
we could hear the cars ten feet away
out there on the street

I felt so desperate in your arms

I like crowd singalongs, and you may find yourself marveling as I did at the enthusiasm of this group of Sunday show-attenders. Not only could they sing the whole chorus for John on songs like “You Or Your Memory,” but listen to the performance of the title track off their brand new album Heretic Pride — it’s only been out for two weeks!

Heretic Pride (live 3/2/08) – The Mountain Goats

Everyone sings so emphatically. It kind of makes me look around and say, “Who are you people!?” I guess that’s a sign of a well-loved band, one with the kind of lyrics you instantly want to learn by heart.

You can stream and download the entire show here.

[photo credits]

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  • Excellent stuff. Any chance of getting the whole show?

    Brendan K. — March 8, 2008 @ 1:47 pm

  • Brendan….there’s a link in the post, right at the end.

    heather — March 8, 2008 @ 3:12 pm

  • My love for John Darnielle knows no bounds.

    last year's girl — March 9, 2008 @ 4:35 am

  • Again, you are my hero, Heather!
    How didja know I was needin’ an MG fix? Thanks soooooo much!

    Ruralgurl — March 9, 2008 @ 7:53 pm

  • This is great, thank you so much for this set. Darnielle played a 21 and up show in Seattle so this is the closest thing I can get to seeing him live anytime soon. Thanks again!

    Omar — March 25, 2008 @ 10:37 am

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Bio Pic Name: Heather Browne
Location: Colorado, originally by way of California
Giving context to the torrent since 2005.

"I love the relationship that anyone has with music: because there's something in us that is beyond the reach of words, something that eludes and defies our best attempts to spit it out. It's the best part of us, probably, the richest and strangest part..."
—Nick Hornby, Songbook
"Music has always been a matter of energy to me, a question of Fuel. Sentimental people call it Inspiration, but what they really mean is Fuel."
—Hunter S. Thompson

Mp3s are for sampling purposes, kinda like when they give you the cheese cube at Costco, knowing that you'll often go home with having bought the whole 7 lb. spiced Brie log. They are left up for a limited time. If you LIKE the music, go and support these artists, buy their schwag, go to their concerts, purchase their CDs/records and tell all your friends. Rock on.

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