charlie park

The Mountain Goats at The National, Richmond, VA

Last night I had the great good fortune to see my favorite band, John Darnielle / The Mountain Goats, in Richmond. It was the first show in their tour in support of their new album, Transcendental Youth, which you can stream from Rolling Stone.

This isn’t a review of the album, or the band, or the show, as my strengths don’t lend themselves to writing reviews like that. I’ll just quote John Hodgman’s brilliant review: “TRANSCENDENTAL YOUTH is full of songs about people who madly, stupidly, blessedly won’t stop surviving, no matter who gives up on them.”

But, for posterity, I wanted to record the setlist. I’ve linked to the songs on Amazon, when available, and to YouTube when they’re from an unreleased/unavailable album.

I don’t think he actually played the title track (Transcendental Youth) from the new album, and I really would have loved to hear Counterfeit Florida Plates, and, of course, The Best Ever Death Metal Band In Denton, but maybe those were being held for a second encore, which, frankly, the audience didn’t deserve. Seriously, future tour cities? Pull for a second encore.

It was a phenomenal show, with the highlight for me being the first encore song, where they played “This Year” with a horn section (the horns from the opening act, Matthew E. White. It’s hard to articulate how much the horns added, and I hope The Mountain Goats will record a version in the studio with the horn section. If you go to one of the other shows on this tour, PLEASE grab a video of “This Year” and put it on YouTube? The world will owe you.

John Darnielle is a treasure. I’m so glad I got to see him last night.