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Mountain Goats singer John Darnielle's Debut Novel Wolf in White Van

2 years ago by Kyle Harris
Cultural critics have been debating the virtues and perils of youth-obsessed literature all summer long. In the New York Times, A.O. Scott lamented "The Death of Adulthood in American Culture." Slate's Ruth Graham wrote the screed "Against YA," bashing older fans of young-adult fiction. Both say they fear that the...

The five best shows in Denver from June 2 to June 5

2 years ago by Backbeat
There are bigger concerts, sure, but for our money there is no better way to see Red Rocks than during Film on the Rocks. The series, which features Colorado bands opening for beloved movies, starts Tuesday with Ark Life, Covenhoven and Caddyshack. You can also see some masterful old-timey updates...

The Eight Worst Albums Ever: Let's Give Them a Second Chance

2 years ago by Luke Winkie
Reviewing music is, at best, an inexact science. You may say, "I don't like The Mountain Goats because John Darnielle's voice is annoying." I would respond with, "Fuck you, his voice isn't annoying at all, you just don't get it." That's pretty much divisive music discourse in a nutshell. But...

Jakob Dylan Cancels Folks Fest Appearance

8 years ago by Dave Herrera
We just got word that Jakob Dylan canceled his Rocky Mountain Folks Fest appearance, but the good news is that John Darnielle of the Mountain Goats will be flying in for a rare solo set on Sunday, August 17. KT Tunstall, Missy Higgins, Stephen Kellogg, Amos Lee, Patty Griffin, Nanci...

Can musicians still impact politics?

6 years ago by Kiernan Maletsky
As the labor protests wage on in Wisconsin, several prominent musicians have taken to using their art to express their support. John Darnielle of the Mountain Goats recorded a hundred-year-old folk song "There is Power in a Union," and Steve Earle rereleased a single of his own to benefit The...

The ten most brutally honest songwriters

3 years ago by Jesse Livingston
Let's be real: Most songwriting amounts to a bunch of vague amateur poetry with pretensions of profundity. In the midst of all the babble, though, periodically a lyricist will emerge who has the courage to write about things that are real, raw and personal. That kind of truly honest songwriting...

Top ten five blogs by bands

7 years ago by Kiernan Maletsky
Last week, Kanye christened his new web site with the above photo of his girlfriend, Amber Rose. Then, Thom Yorke announced the name of his latest band on the Radiohead blog. Which got us thinking about the other band blogs we have bookmarked. In our bitchin' browser. Unfortunately, almost all...

Sound Bites: Ancestors, AU, the Mountain Goats, Brian Setzer Orchestra and xx

7 years ago by Nick Hall
Welcome to another edition of Sound Bites, our economy-sized album reviews, wherein we give you the lowdown in 75 words or less. Today, Nick Hall weighs in on recent releases from Ancestors, AU, the Mountain Goats, Brian Setzer Orchestra and xx after the jump...

Listen Up

Club d'Elf, Now I Understand (Accurate). The brainchild of Boston bassist Mike Rivard, Club d'Elf is a genre-shattering collective that merges jazz, hip-hop, electronic music, worldbeat and more with the help of collaborators ranging from DJ Logic to onetime David Bowie associate Reeves Gabrels. Now I Understand is both instrumentally...

Backbeat writers weigh in on the year's best national releases

Even with the staggering amount of outstanding local music released this past year (our annual Moovers and Shakers compendium is available online at, Backbeat writers somehow managed to make room on our playlists for an impressive number of imports. And although it shouldn't be a surprise by now, it's...


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