Having just enjoyed the success of his second novel Universal Harvester, John Darnielle, the mastermind and frontman of beloved indie folk rock outfit Mountain Goats, is getting the gang back together for a new album. Goths, the band’s 16th full-length release, follows up 2015’s fantastic Beat the Champ, and will be released on May 19th via Merge.
“The theme this time around is goth, a subject closer to my heart perhaps than that of any Mountain Goats album previous,” comments bassist Peter Hughes. “And while John writes the songs, as he always has, it feels more than ever like he’s speaking for all of us in the band, erstwhile goths (raises hand) or otherwise, for these are songs that approach an identity most often associated with youth from a perspective that is inescapably adult. Anyone old enough to have had the experience of finding oneself at sea in a cultural landscape that’s suddenly indecipherable will empathize with Pat Travers showing up to a Bauhaus show looking to jam, for example.
But underneath the outward humor, there is evident throughout a real tenderness toward, and solidarity with, our former fellow travelers—the friends whose bands never made it out of Fender’s Ballroom, the Gene Loves Jezebels of the world—the ones whose gothic paths were overtaken by the realities of life, or of its opposite. It’s something we talk about a lot, how fortunate and grateful we are to share this work, a career that’s become something more rewarding and fulfilling than I think any of us could have imagined. We all know how easily it could’ve gone the other way, and indeed for a long time did.”
As if to prove a point, the band also released the lead single from the album “Andrew Eldritch is Moving Back to Leeds,” namedropping the goth icon and Sisters of Mercy frontman.
In addition, the band makes sure to let you know that the album was made with
“NO COMPED VOCALS
NO PITCH CORRECTION
on the album’s bandcamp page.
Check out the single, album cover, and tracklist below.
01. Rain in Soho
02. Andrew Eldritch is Moving Back to Leeds
03. The Grey King and the Silver Flame Attunement
04. We Do It Different on the West Coast
05. Unicorn Tolerance
06. Stench of the Unburied
07. Wear Black
08. Paid in Cocaine
09. Rage of Travers
11. For the Portuguese Goth Metal Bands
12. Abandoned Flesh