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Heretic Pride [Vinyl]


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Performer Notes
  • THE SUNSET TREE and GET LONELY--the Mountain Goats' John Darnielle completely upended the aesthetic of his first decade as a songwriter, penning nakedly autobiographical songs given ornate, cleanly recorded arrangements. With HERETIC PRIDE, Darnielle seems to be saying that that chapter of his career has concluded: although the sound of the album does not return to the deliberately noisy lo-fi sound of early albums (see SWEDEN), Darnielle has reverted to writing fanciful, allegory-driven songs about anyone except himself. Similarly, the thrumming energy level of the early Mountain Goats returns on songs such as the title track and "Lovecraft In Brooklyn." Taking the best from the first and second parts of his career, John Darnielle here embarks on part three.
Professional Reviews
Spin (p.98) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[With] finely drawn chamber-twang arrangements....[There's] a clever bit of real life poking through the fiction."

Uncut (p.96) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "Darnielle dresses songs of romance, heartache, and travel in elegant leaps of language."

Alternative Press (p.152) - 4.5 stars out of 5 -- "HERETIC PRIDE succeeds because of its focus on the details....PRIDE's music is more ornate and well-wrought than LONELY."

CMJ - "It's an ambitious offering to be sure, but even when Darnielle shifts gears, he still reaches his destination."

Q (Magazine) (p.108) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "These succinct, sparse vignettes could double as short stories, Darnielle's evocative imagery giving the likes of 'San Bernardino' a cinematic feel."

Blender (Magazine) (p.81) - "With drums, strings, pianos, amps and backup singers, this is the biggest-sounding record ever for a band that used to consist of one guy on acoustic guitar..."

Paste (magazine) (p.68) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "Darnielle is a narrator as instantly recognizable as Raymond Carver or Charles Bukowski, his primary subject being doomed relationships, his primary architectural too being a strident acoustic guitar."

The Word (magazine) (p.107) - "There's plenty of wry humour and provocative metaphor for Goats fans to chew on, plus some fantastic titles..."
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