The Mountain Goats are a four-piece indie folk band from Durham, North Carolina. The band was formed by the multi-instrumentalist singer-songwriter John Darnielle in Claremont, California. The quartet also includes Peter Hughes on bass and backing vocals, Jon Wurster on drums, and jack-of-all trades Matt Douglas on flutes, saxophone, keyboards, clarinet, guitar, and backing vocals. Throughout their career, the group amassed a huge catalog of music, including 16 studio albums, four compilations, and 23 EPs. Summer Tour 2017 is dedicated to the band’s latest release, Goths. This album took its inspiration from The Cure, Siouxsie and the Banshees, and Joy Division (the Gothic holy trinity, IMO), and from the band listening to California radio station KROQ. The Mountain Goats' 18-song set at Republic consisted of material from nine of their releases, with an obvious focus on the new album.
Darnielle is by far one of the funniest and most charismatic front men out there today. To say he engages the audience would be a massive understatement, and his love for his fans and the city of New Orleans is amazing, to say the least. He enjoys telling stories before a lot of his songs, giving the audience insight into the mindset he had while writing a particular piece. Due to the fact that there was another show following their performance, the banter became more on point toward the end of the set, so that the band had time to fit in all that they could. Favorite stories included one about Ozzy Osbourne, another to explain the song “California Jam,” and also how Darnielle had “Paid in Cocaine.” “Wear Black” and “Unicorn Tolerance” from Goths got even more clarity after John explained them. Towards the end of the set and keeping with his love of his fans, John directly serenaded a guy in the front row. All in all, it was a wonderful evening. You can see more pictures here.