In an interesting crossover, Stephen Colbert brought legendary indie folk group The Mountain Goats on to his late night show, and performed “This Year” with the band. According to Spin, while the group was on the show to promote their upcoming seventeenth studio album, In League with Dragons, Colbert requested that they perform “This Year” off their 2005 album, The Sunset Tree, because it is one of his favorite songs by the band. Colbert joins in, singing enthusiastically once the first chorus begins. The group also performed “Sicilian Crest”, one of three In League with Dragons singles, on The Late Show.
“This Year”, like much of The Sunset Tree, explores frontman John Darnielle’s experiences growing up in rural California. This song in particular focuses on Darnielle’s intense desire to escape the worst parts of his life at home and move on to greener pastures. In another surprising crossover, Darnielle appears to be wearing an Inter Arma t-shirt during the performance. Inter Arma is a very popular and critically acclaimed metal group, and not necessarily the first group one would expect Darnielle to be a fan of based on the folk music he makes with The Mountain Goats.