The Mountain Goats

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(But he was also pretty much part of the Hideout/alt-country world here in Chicago, played at a Doug Sahm tribute at Lounge Ax, and toured with Neko and others around that time, so he wasn't an ostracized guy at all; just didn't fit into what Billions and T&G were championing at the time.)

Eazy, Monday, 16 March 2009 20:38 (5 years ago) Permalink

andrew bird, comfortably splitting the difference between concertos and simplistic chicago post-punk.

He grew in Pussyville. Population: him. (call all destroyer), Monday, 16 March 2009 20:39 (5 years ago) Permalink

I don't understand how it would make sense to posit it as some formative thing that Bird wasn't attracted to the "flourishing" of a small group of Chicago post-punk bands.

xpost - by the way, we're talking about the mid-90s here

Honestly, I'm pretty sure that sentence is the writer's (non-music-jargony) way of referring to the alt-rock at the Metro, which it might make sense for Bird to react to. And I suspect the writer isn't otherwise aware that there was plenty of flourishing of complicated music on non-rock instruments happening in Chicago at exactly that moment. I suspect Andrew Bird told the writer he felt alienated from the rock/punk stuff going on in the city at the time, and the writer then assembled a sentence that made Bird sound, somewhat romantically, like a lone dissenter or misfit in a rock scene. Which makes for nice copy, but doesn't seem like a complete claim at all.

nabisco, Monday, 16 March 2009 20:41 (5 years ago) Permalink

I don't understand how it would make sense to posit it as some formative thing that Bird wasn't attracted to the "flourishing" of a small group of Chicago post-punk bands.

that's not what the writer is saying. the writer is saying (as I read it) Bird wasn't interested in concertos, and he wasn't interested in Tar/Shellac whatever etc etc

Mr. Que, Monday, 16 March 2009 20:46 (5 years ago) Permalink

Well, a lot of Chicago bands around him were fitting in with the sound of the labels here at the time: so there were Bloodshot bands, Touch & Go bands, and Thrill Jockey bands. What he was doing didn't fit in with those, and he was never on a local label, unlike a lot of his peers at the time.

Eazy, Monday, 16 March 2009 20:47 (5 years ago) Permalink

I dunno, guys: keep in mind that this is a general-interest article written by someone who doesn't appear to write about music.

Que, the sentence is organized to suggest, pretty strongly, that the stark/simplistic "post-punk" that Bird couldn't relate to was somehow the dominant Chicago scene -- that it was the sound that "flourished" in 90s Chicago, leaving Bird somewhat romantically trapped between his concertos and the rock kids.

Now, no matter what we think he's referring to, or what elements of felt truth there might have been in that, we're talking about an era in Chicago where one major thing that was "flourishing" involved like Jim O'Rourke making pop and the Sea and Cake and such, so the suggestion that Andrew Bird was somehow an outcast from the mainstream of the scene seems really odd to me (even before the Bloodshot/Hideout stuff comes into view).

I'd reiterate that this is a non-music journalist in the NYT Magazine -- I really don't know that he himself exactly has Shellac in mind. Like I said, my guess is that a general expression on Bird's part of not being able to relate to some rock scene has just slipped onto the page, making for nice copy, without the writer's thinking: wait, was that the main scene happening at the time? Is anything else missing from this picture?

nabisco, Monday, 16 March 2009 20:56 (5 years ago) Permalink

i think you're totally overthinking it. i think Shellac and the Sea and Cake and Jim O can all fall under post-punk/simplistic label (esp. if you're, as you say, a NY Times writer who doesn't write about music all that much) without too much trouble.

Mr. Que, Monday, 16 March 2009 20:59 (5 years ago) Permalink

ay yi yi, this thread. Happy Birthday, John! Hahahahahaha!

scott seward, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:00 (5 years ago) Permalink

O'Rourke records are too "stark" for Andrew Bird to relate to???

nabisco, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:03 (5 years ago) Permalink


<3 this pic haha

tylerw, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:04 (5 years ago) Permalink

who is this andrew bird character anyway? someone i should have heard of? (not gonna read the nyt piece.)

ian, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:05 (5 years ago) Permalink

hes a squirrel nut zipper

rip dom passantino 3/5/09 never forget (max), Monday, 16 March 2009 21:06 (5 years ago) Permalink

more like andrew turd

velko, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:06 (5 years ago) Permalink

is he related to larry bird

ian, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:07 (5 years ago) Permalink

he's good, you might like him. violin, loops and experimental vox. i hear the new one is good.

Surmounter, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:07 (5 years ago) Permalink

but does he poo clouds?

scott seward, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:09 (5 years ago) Permalink

a quick gis reveals him to be DASHING, even when disheveled.

ian, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:09 (5 years ago) Permalink

he does poo clouds, yes. pretty sick.

tylerw, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:10 (5 years ago) Permalink

that goat is stocky

― velko, Monday, March 16, 2009 4:29 PM

like his fanbase ;)

eman, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:10 (5 years ago) Permalink

Anyway, though, I'll try not to belabor the one sentence -- I just get this sense, when general-interest writers do these musician profiles, that certain impressions go wrong somewhere in the translation; probably the same way science buffs feel about science articles. (There are other details in the Bird piece that seemed odd to me: some fretting about playing large venues when I'm pretty sure he's played larger; some of the obligatory wrap-up conclusions; little profile details about songwriting process that seem like they'd be true for half of the musicians you talked to, etc.)

nabisco, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:10 (5 years ago) Permalink

i saw a fan go up to oldham with the "you're such a genius" shtick, it was really awkward until the guy asked if he knew where the bathroom was and oldham said "so you really like my music and you gotta take a piss?"

― bnw, Monday, March 16, 2009 4:05 PM (59 minutes ago) Bookmark

I like to think that this fan views oldham as some all-powerful all-knowing oracle who can answer any query at hand

"will, what's the population of guam?"
"will, where will I go when I die?"
"will, where did I park my car?"

鬼の手 (Edward III), Monday, 16 March 2009 21:11 (5 years ago) Permalink

http://vids.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=vids.individual&videoid=53098479

Jeremy
Mar 3, 2009 4:05 PM

More like Andrew Turd.

eman, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:13 (5 years ago) Permalink

lol

velko, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:13 (5 years ago) Permalink

鬼の手 (Edward III), Monday, 16 March 2009 21:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

nabisco's totally right, btw -- general-interest profiles of musicians often get things slightly or totally wrong. it has been thus forever. right?

tylerw, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:14 (5 years ago) Permalink

mountain goats are pretty amazing looking! wow.

tylerw, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:15 (5 years ago) Permalink

ian, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:16 (5 years ago) Permalink

ian, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

ian, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

nabisco's totally right, btw -- general-interest profiles of musicians often get things slightly or totally wrong. it has been thus forever. right?

how about: journalists get things slightly or totally wrong all the time etc etc etc

Mr. Que, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

Mr. Que, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:18 (5 years ago) Permalink

srsly i don't think anyone is disputing the idea that journalists often write inaccurate or biased pieces. for a wide variety of reasons! ignorance or self-indulgence are only two of many possibilities.

ian, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

i am def gonna get some curry goat for dinner btw.

ian, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

how about: journalists get things slightly or totally wrong all the time etc etc etc
nah, don't think that's true ... (kidding: yes.)

tylerw, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:19 (5 years ago) Permalink

velko, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:20 (5 years ago) Permalink

http://blogs.villagevoice.com/music/archives/2009/03/the_mountain_go.php

How funny, I happen to be an 30yr old obsessed Mountain Goats fan and former Juggalo, the two are not that far apart

Posted by: hanuman at March 3, 2009 2:41 PM

ian, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:40 (5 years ago) Permalink

I think what's odd to me about it in these cases is that I'm pretty sure there are plenty of people who could write excellent general-audience profiles of Bird, from a perspective that's maybe more in the music field, most of them probably cheaper than regular NYT Mag contributors -- but that gap doesn't get filled often, does it? Beyond like SFJ and Kelefa and a few newspaper people. It's not that I think music can only be written about my music writers, but it always feels like there's an unnecessary disconnect on this front, a weird lack of bridging between the music realm and the general-audience stuff.

nabisco, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:45 (5 years ago) Permalink

can we all at least agree that without getting into the validity of not of the gawker article that it reads like it was written by a child?

a thread for clams that you are free to disregard (jjjusten), Monday, 16 March 2009 21:51 (5 years ago) Permalink

it = the gawker article

a thread for clams that you are free to disregard (jjjusten), Monday, 16 March 2009 21:51 (5 years ago) Permalink

How funny, I happen to be an 30yr old obsessed Mountain Goats fan and former Juggalo, the two are not that far apart

dan's lying about his age, now?

da croupier, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:53 (5 years ago) Permalink

the only similarity i see between mtn goats and insane clown posses is that they are both jesus lovers.

ian, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:54 (5 years ago) Permalink

also both claim to have eaten dead bodies

Wes HI DEREson (HI DERE), Monday, 16 March 2009 21:56 (5 years ago) Permalink

TS: The Sunset Tree Vs. The Riddle Box

da croupier, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:56 (5 years ago) Permalink

by virtue of being churchgoers, or something more sinister? xp

ian, Monday, 16 March 2009 21:57 (5 years ago) Permalink

What is a mountain goat?
Lemme think for a second. (well? )
Oh, he gets butt naked.
And then he walks through the street winkin at freaks,
Wit a two-liter stuck in his butt-cheeks!
What is a mountain goat?
He just dont care.
He might try to put a weave in his nut hair.
Cuz he could give a fuck less what a bitch thinks,
He tell her that her butt stinks, and all that,
What is a mountain goat?
He drinks like a fish,
And then he starts huggin people like a drunk bitch,
Next thing hes pickin fights with his best friends,
Then he starts with the huggin again, fuck,
What is a mountain goat?
A fuckin lunatic.
Somebody with a rope tied to his dick,
Then he jumps out a ten-story windowéééoh!
(chorus:)
What is a mountain goat?
A mountain goat? if thats what it is, well fuck if I know.
What is a mountain goat?
I dont know, but Im down with the clown, and Im down for life, yo.
(end chorus)
(chorus)
(vocal breakdown)
What is a mountain goat?
A dead body.
Well he aint really dead, but he aint like anybody
That youve ever met before.
Hell eat monopoly and shit out connect four.
What is a moun-
What the fuck? connec-man, that shits wack.
Dont worry bout my shit, just rap, mutha fucker.
What is a mountain goat?
He aint a bitch boy.
Hell walk through to the hills and beat down a rich boy.
Walks right in the house where ya havin supper,
And dip his nuts in ya soupéébloop!
What is a mountain goat?
Well he aint a phoney.
Hell walk up and bust a nut in your macaroni.
And watch you sit there and finish up the last bit,
Cuz youre a stupid-ass dumb fuckin idiot.
What is a mountain goat?
Hes a graduate.
He graduated from......well,
At least hes got a job, hes not a dumb putz,
He works for himself scratchin his nuts, ha!
What is a mountain goat?
A hulkamaniac.
He powerbombs mutha fuckas into thumbtacks. (bwa!)
People like him till they find out hes unstable.
He sabued ya mama through a coffee table. (oh my god!)
(chorus)
(vocal breakdown)
(chorus)
(chorus)
(vocal breakdown)
What is a mountain goat?

a thread for clams that you are free to disregard (jjjusten), Monday, 16 March 2009 22:02 (5 years ago) Permalink

both stab people

She Is Beyond Food In Weevil (Mackro Mackro), Monday, 16 March 2009 22:03 (5 years ago) Permalink

pretty certain i just ensured that i will never be on the J0hn D christmas card list

a thread for clams that you are free to disregard (jjjusten), Monday, 16 March 2009 22:17 (5 years ago) Permalink

what are you even talking about, you just bought yourself lifetime guest list

Just one thing I was thinking about as I was getting on the copter (J0hn D.), Monday, 16 March 2009 23:28 (5 years ago) Permalink

What is a mountain goat?
He just dont care.

HELLO FALL 2009 TOUR SHIRT

Just one thing I was thinking about as I was getting on the copter (J0hn D.), Monday, 16 March 2009 23:29 (5 years ago) Permalink

J0hn, I posted a birthday song/lyric on your Facebook, do I get lifetime +1 guest list also?

ilxor, Monday, 16 March 2009 23:31 (5 years ago) Permalink


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