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Thread for talking about That Band
  • I still hate the horns

  • get lonely really is some impressively dour, depressed shit. i listened to it constantly on my headphones while wandering the streets after a breakup and it was pretty much the perfect soundtrack.

    wild sage is at the top of the list when it comes to songs that can perfectly encapsulate my personal form of sadness in that situation with a pretty amazing specificity. pretty much every line slays me.

  • I’ma hafta get on that today. Will report back.

  • I have not dug a tMG record since WSABH. Granted I listen to on average like zero new records per year these days but man, that Life of the World to Come joint sounded like a self-help seminar set to some sad indie music. Just cannae get behind the maudlin stuff like at all any longer. I hope he gets into a Greatest Palace Music mode and recovers all of that late period dire mopey stuff with like oom-pah arrangements and shit.

  • I am basically a loyalist. I haven’t really disliked anything. That’s a weak statement. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed everything. I’ve streamed the new album and I love it. I don’t know what else to say about that. Um, I will admit, with respect to The_Tourist’s comment, that one of the many tattoos of plants that I have on my person is of the plant wild sage. Don’t judge, that song fucking slayed me too and meant things to me that weren’t just sad at the time, and no regrets. It’s a pretty tattoo, and rarely does anyone ever ask me to explain it, so it’s sort of my thing.

  • Put me down for a tentative thumbs up in regards to Get Lonely. I recall being rather lukewarm toward the album when it first came out (“Where are the bangers?” Ignatius asked me. “I don’t know… not that kind of album, I guess.”). Then a week or two later I had myself a little breakup and figured I’d throw it on.

    Things got sad and about 5 days later I looked over and was shocked at my playcount. I now tread carefully and cautiously around this album.

    “Moon Over Goldsboro” is something of a high-water mark, imho.

  • There’re some clips on Youtube of live versions of Get Lonely songs (shot in some church or something? I can’t remember) that really make them for me…

    I hope my copy of the new one arrives tomorrow. I reckon it’d’ve been here today if it weren’t a public holiday.

  • You know, I think part of the reason that I don’t listen to tMG as much these days is due to associating a number of songs with my Big Fucking Trainwreck Of A Breakup back in 2007.

  • Thanks for posting that video upthread, @ophiccillion. God, that was actually worse than I remember it. It’s like a Jimmy Eat World song. A bad one. Or like he wrote it expressly for a Sensitive Young Adult Independent Film or like, Glee.

  • Jeez, you guys are snobs! Whatever. That Band can do no wrong live, for me. Listened to Tallahassee again yesterday and the hair on my arms stood straight up for a good long time. I’m Iranian, dude, I have a lot of hair to lift.

  • I’m not saying dude’s track record with me ain’t otherwise stellar, that being the single song in the catalog that I actively dislike.

    For me, “Lovecraft in Brooklyn” always gets the hair on my neck to stand up.

  • Ooh, I’m going to do the list thing!

    1. Coroner’s Gambit
    2. Full Force Galesburg
    3. Nine Black Poppies
    4. Zopilote Machine
    5. Bitter Melon Farm
    6. All Hail West Texas
    7. Sweden
    8. Ghana
    9. Nothing for Juice
    10. The Sunset Tree
    11. Protein Source of the Future…Now!
    12. Tallahassee

    And I suppose the others I don’t much care for.

    In related news, what’s this I see about The Hound Chronicles and Hot Garden Stomp being released as a comp this year? There’s at least some of that stuff I don’t have…

  • @Heather, that was my first one too!

    I can still remember with perfect clarity the moment I purchased it. I had just read a review in Puncture (all time favorite/most influential magazine ever) and loved the album even before I heard it. I was on Christmas vacation with my family in Knoxville, TN, and I had saved up like $200 to spend at The Disc Exchange. I was specifically looking for Nine Black Poppies, and they totally had it, and I snatched it off the rack and added it to my stack and was smiling sooo big.

  • Woah, I was really surprised to find that ferguson was a fan of That Band.

    One thing I kind of liked about LPTJ was the absurdity of the fact that, while so many people joined mostly because they were fans of That Band, it was (to some extent) a mystery who was and who wasn’t. I kind of liked that. Perhaps I’ll stay clear of this thread in the future, so as to avoid further spoilers.

  • Well, for me there was a very big line between That Band, which I love and think is just insanely brilliant, and That Guy, with whom I did not get along especially well, but who was our host, after all. I definitely was there for the writing and not for any halo effect from the band. It’s a weird feeling to be a huge fan of some sides of a person (writer, musician) and not much of a fan of another side (web dude) of the very same person. Huge fan of The Webmistress in all aspects, though, to just amplify the weirdness.

    I guess it’s not really that weird. Some of my best beloved and closest friends are also people who irritate the living heck out of me (and I don’t imagine the feeling is not mutual). Off topic, though.

  • here’s my list thing.

    Coroner’s Gambit
    All Hail West Texas
    Zopilote Machine
    Sweden
    Full Force Galesburg
    Tallahassee
    The Sunset Tree
    Nine Black Poppies
    Nothing for Juice
    All Eternals Deck

    all these together will be right up there after sweden, but they are just one huge album in my mind and i can’t rank them individually: Bitter Melon Farm/ Ghana/ Protein Source of the Future…Now!

    all the one-sided 12” EPs (or whatever they are, i don’t own legit copies) plus other EPs from the same period (jam eater’s blues, on juhu beach) collectively would be up there above sweden

    i’ll probably never listen to get lonely. seems like it crosses my sadness threshold. and right now, in life, i’m pretty sad in general. not sure if it’ll be cathartic or just horrible.

  • Bitter Melon Farm stands out by virtue of containing Historiography and No I Can’t.

  • for me it goes

    1. wsabh
    2. the coroner’s gambit
    3. bitter melon farm
    4. tallahassee
    5. http://mountaingoatsplusmovies.tumblr.com
  • Except for the obnoxious fonts!

  • I want to steal the Black Books one for my icon. Too bad they’re so on the nose.

  • I may be a rabid evangelist, but I can still discriminate (I think). Here’s my rankings, excluding Transcendental Youth & Hot Garden Stomp / Hound Chronicles, which are too new for me to evaluate. Love what I’ve heard, though.

    Truth is, I’m always re-ordering this list, depending on what lyrics & themes have grown suddenly luminous in my continuous tMG playlist.

    Albums

    1. Coroner’s Gambit
    2. Zopilote Machine
    3. Full Force Galesburg
    4. The Sunset Tree
    5. Ghana
    6. All Hail West Texas
    7. Protein Source for the Future … Now!
    8. All Eternals Deck
    9. We Shall All Be Healed
    10. Sweden
    11. Beautiful Rat Sunset
    12. The Life of the World to Come
    13. Heretic Pride
    14. Get Lonely
    15. Bitter Melon Farm
    16. Tallahassee
    17. Nine Black Poppies
    18. Nothing for Juice

    EPs

    1. Satanic Messiah
    2. On Juhu Beach
    3. Isopanisad Radio Hour
    4. New Asian Cinema
    5. Babylon Springs
  • Poor Nine Black Poppies! Poor Cubs in Five! Poor Going to Utrecht!

  • Cubs in Five is one of the very few tMG songs I actively dislike. So sorry, davy!

  • would rate nothing for juice over most of those records honestly

  • Don’t think I ever posted this on LPTJ, but here’s a longish piece I wrote in 2003 after interviewing JD & PH before a show at the Bottom of the Hill in SF. Reading it now, parts of it make me wince - e.g. the plodding academic pace, the maddening refusal of my younger self to accept that music is as much a part of poetry as words are - though I wouldn’t change the basic argument. I just feel like I made my points more truthfully & succinctly in a Paris Review piece 7 yrs later. A link to that piece was one of my first posts in LPTJ, pretty sure.

  • Though nothing has hit me as hard as, say, All Hail West Texas or Tallahassee in the recent output, I haven’t experienced the kind of falling out a lot of you guys describe. One tiny thing that has been bothering me in the last few records though, and it seems really minor but it always bugs me, is that “leaving out personal pronouns” thing he does quasi-systematically now. It works nicely in some cases, and I can see why it works, but he just does it too often and it actively irks me when I listen to the songs now. Still have much, much love for the Mountain Goats and I was way excited to find a copy of the new record in the mail today and listen to it fo the first time! Also, the Paris show a few years ago was awesome.

  • If you need me, I’ll be in Pedants’ (Pedant’s?) Corner, muttering about compilation albums on ‘best of’ lists.

    @t=24s:

  • @Clayton_Peacock here’s a longish piece I wrote in 2003 after interviewing JD & PH before a show at the Bottom of the Hill in SF.

    You’re Hugbot?!

  • like a lot of you, i haven’t really gotten into the recent albums, but i think for me it’s less a case of me outgrowing them/not having time to digest music, and more a case of that the new albums are just not good. the old songs felt so real and honest, now it seems to be all horn-arranged poems about bible verses and liza minelli.

    i’m really stoned guys, this took me literally twenty minutes to type.

  • @ophiccillion wrote:

    You’re Hugbot?!

    Nope. Who’s Hugbot?

  • The article you linked above was put on Scribd by Hugbot.

    NP FFG. Tell AMG it’s a 5+.

  • I kind of agree with Adam. I didn’t want to like the albums less, I just…do.

  • Ah, I just link to Hugbot’s compendium because the original link vanished after one of Salon’s more idiotic redesigns.

  • ophiccillion posted Partridge video

    That was nice to see again, but I have to say that canned laughter is really jarring!

  • adam said: and more a case of that the new albums are just not good.

    yeah, unfortunately i think this is pretty much on point. i used to be in love with just about every word in every song, then with heretic pride things started to tip. there were some amazing song, but a few that i would skip due to what felt like sub-par lyrics. with each album since, i’ve found myself cringing more and more.

  • Clayton_Peacock said: Don’t think I ever posted this on LPTJ, but here’s a longish piece I wrote in 2003 after interviewing JD & PH before a show at the Bottom of the Hill in SF.

    Awesome, looking forward to reading this later, thanks!

    Also, here’s a very good interview by Black Amnesia of Heaven on the new album: http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2012/10/the-mountain-goats-transcendental-recording-process/263013/

  • Re: Alan Partridge, as is usually the case with those things, I found the canned laughter very jarring for the first episode or so, and then my brain sort of tuned it out.

  • edison here’s a very good interview by Black Amnesia of Heaven on the new album:

    Had already read this, not knowing the connection. Great piece, Brad!

  • Maybe it’s just my current perspective on things, but it seems to me that even in Brad’s (excellent!) interview, JD is being pretty condescending, i.e. “Do you know who mixed the record? Did you pay attention to that?” I dunno.

  • haha and i totally knew it was scott solter, it was just a very slow moving afternoon

    pretty sure the condescension is a result of reading it as text instead of having it spoken to you; that was one of the most pleasant interviews i’ve ever conducted

  • and thanks everyone!

  • The_Tourist said:

    i used to be in love with just about every word in every song, then with heretic pride things started to tip. there were some amazing song, but a few that i would skip due to what felt like sub-par lyrics. with each album since, i’ve found myself cringing more and more.

    It’s weird, that’s how Tallahassee still affects me, minus “No Children” and “Oceanographer’s Choice”. The high regard for Tallahassee upthread is making me wonder if I just heard the album at the wrong time. I was a major fan of the lo-fi catalog when Tallahassee came out.

    I do think one of the hazards of tMG’s studio work is that lyrics which might have worked in a lo-fi performance have more opportunity to fail by being matched to the wrong sound, instrument, etc. There’s just more moving parts.

    NP: Does anyone know anything about this All Survivors Pack of AED demos? Discovered “Birth of Serpents” the other day, and while it’s awesome to hear my favorite AED song done lo-fi, I still prefer the studio version. Which seems to indicate that the studio work is playing some transformative role and heightening my experience of the words.

  • “No Children” and “Oceanographer’s Choice”.

    Those two songs are pretty much the main reason I still think highly of Tallahassee (though I grew to love the album as a conceptual whole due to hearing it during and directly after a particularly grueling dysfunctional-living-situation breakup).

  • Clayton_Peacock said: NP: Does anyone know anything about this All Survivors Pack of AED demos? Discovered “Birth of Serpents” the other day, and while it’s awesome hear my favorite AED song done lo-fi, I still prefer the studio version. Which seems to indicate that the studio components are playing some transformative role and heightening my experience of the words.

    i listened to my cassette copy for the first time the other day (i’ve been without a cassette player for a while) and i had a much more positive experience with the album. i’m not someone that chooses a hard side on the studio vs. lofi albums (i love tallahassee just as much as i love full force galesburg), but for some reason this album worked better for me stripped down.

    except for one track - i’m in love with the choir on the studio version of high hawk season. those dudes rule.

  • Clayton_Peacock Does anyone know anything about this All Survivors Pack of AED demos?

    Features Catherine Antrim’s Kid, which echoes Billy The Kid’s Dream… One of the clear instances of JD burying a great tune where fewer people will hear it. Except of course it’s on youtube:

  • ophiccillion wrote:

    i’m in love with the choir on the studio version of high hawk season. those dudes rule.

    yeah, high hawk season’s a joy. the choir feels like a jubilee quartet.

  • Yes, that is some of my favorite shit right there.

  • My goddamn copy of the new one still isn’t here. Fuck red-eye. Fuck them in the ear. (or in fact the eye)

    Also great big YES from me for men’s choir on High Hawk Season.

  • davy said: I’ve always been a little surprised by the cult of WSABH. I mean, I guess it’s the darkest, maybe? Is that it?

    But man, I was instantly turned off by it for a variety of reasons (with the exception of two brilliant songs on side b), and ever since I’ve considered it the worst tMG album that was released when I was still a fan.

    i’ve been thinking about this post lately, even though it’s from a hundred years ago. i guess cause I’ve been listening to the coroners gambit a lot, and then i think, damn, Davy is right about this album, those first two tracks alone are so powerful. but then today, when I was feeling more upbeat, i put on wsabh. and south west vultures was first. and i just stood in the kitchen making dinner and sang along to the whole thing. and it’s still my favourite album, by any band.