Gig Review: The Mountain Goats @ Metro Theatre
There were several moments during The Mountain Goats' performance where I felt that I may have been involved in some sort of elaborate prank. The amount of chaotic applause and song request screams that rang out from the audience between each tune was fucking ridiculous. I wouldn't have been surprised if the entire audience busted into a choreographed flash mob dance act, jazz hands and all.
I wasn't the only one that thought so. "I'm gonna be telling people about you guys for quite sometime," said the Goats' front man, John Darnielle. He repeatedly made reference to how insane the crowd was reacting, saying we were, "Fucking awesome," despite his fears about sounding like a, "kiss ass."
I only knew one Mountain Goats' song from their entire set (I was there as a plus one), so I was confused as shit by the audience reaction. Nerdy looking dudes were losing it, pumping their fists, throwing goat horns, even starting mini mosh pits. I thought Darnielle was gonna crowd surf at one stage, he looked so pleased with the situation. He didn't — although he did at one stage take off his spectacles for a brief fit of head banging.
Being part of this crowd actually made me feel guilty for not getting what everyone was so excited about. It was like what I imagine an atheist would experience at a Hillsong convention — everyone seemed nice, polite and really happy with life, but their unwavering enthusiasm about something I didn't give a shit about just made me feel tremendously uncomfortable.
I'm not meaning to be critical of the Mountain Goats, they were good — in a "they're the kind of band who's CD my dad would buy from Sanity the day after seeing them play a set on Good News Weekend" kind of "good." But they didn't blow me away.
I was stoked to hear the band play This Year (aka the only Mountain Goats' song I know), but the rest of the performance I literally spent gazing at nut jobs in the crowd that were thrashing about like they were at a fucking Metallica concert.
And power to them! This was not the best gig I've been to, but it's definitely one of the best audiences I've ever been a part of. Whether they were legit, or high on crystal meth I don't know, but being a Mountain Goats fan looks like a fucking ball.