Mountain Goats & John Vanderslice | Portage Theater | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader

Mountain Goats & John Vanderslice Recommended Member Picks All Ages Early Warnings (Music) Soundboard

When: Wed., April 1, 8 p.m. 2009

Despite the plural name, the Mountain Goats were essentially a one-man operation for much of the 90s. Though other musicians occasionally turned up on his albums, John Darnielle wrote, sang, and for the most part played the songs; he even recorded them himself, by pressing a button on the boom box whose microphone distortion and grinding motor left their mark on much of his first decade’s output. Since signing to 4AD he’s recorded in studios and toured incessantly with bassist Peter Hughes, often borrowing a drummer from an opening band, but now he’s getting back to basics. On this trip, christened the Gone Primitive tour, he and John Vanderslice are each playing a solo acoustic set, then getting together for a few more songs. Vanderslice’s recent adventures with orchestral backup and the slick sheen of his forthcoming album, Romanian Names (Dead Oceans), make him an odd choice for such a venture, but Darnielle’s vein-popping stage presence and vivid, storylike songs should make his choice of partner all but irrelevant. —Bill Meyer

Price: $16

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