There are some bands that you like. You are happy to listen to their aurally pleasing music. There are some bands you like a lot. You will listen to their songs and maybe even, occasionally, buy one of their albums. And then there are some bands love with your whole being. You are introduced to them at some crucial point in your life (for example, right before you go on a college abroad trip to Scotland your senior year). You listen to them pretty much constantly and their music speaks to you on a level that NOBODY ELSE UNDERSTANDS. You will go to every single one of their shows, even if you just got a new tattoo and sweating in a basement isn’t great for new tattoos, even if you don’t have any money because you make minimum wage and you go out drinking every night, even if you just saw this band play yesterday.
For me, that’s The Mountain Goats. I am not ashamed to say that John Darnielle, lead/sometimes only man, is my Jesus, especially my Jesus in that tough figuring-out-adulthood period between ages 21 and say, 29. Today, while searching for a nice live version of one of my favorite Mountain Goats songs (currently, a lot of them are my favorite on a rotating basis), “Michael Myers Resplendent,” which has the amazing lyrics: “When the house goes up in flames/When the scum begins to circle the drain/Everybody loves a winner,” I came across 21 videos of one of the most moving Mountain Goats shows I ever attended, made by some person called snowcrushkilling, a daytime show at Bottom of the Hill that happened back in 2008 when I was just a 25-year-old baby. I got in via miracle: a free ticket from a guy I had met the night before (at a different Mountain Goats show) who is now my good friend, Drew. I wrote about it in my blog, which was my main deal at the time, saying, among other things, that I “… screamed until my head almost fell off, chanted ‘hail satan’ like a champion and shouted the lyrics to ‘i saw the sign’ like i was some sort of unit commander at normandy.” (Capitalization was NOT my main deal at the time.)
Anyway, it was one of those things you remember forever, and now it exists on the internet, which hopefully won’t erase or replace my memories. For you, this is a magical treat. I’ve put all the videos in one playlist and now you can spend the rest of your Tuesday watching the greatest show of all time and searching for a younger, chubbier me, wearing different glasses, in the audience. Bonne chance! Enjoy!