Mountain Goats latest album, Jenny from Thebes, draws on that love of theater, as well as a cast of characters first brought to life two decades ago. It builds a rock opera out of the story of Jenny from All Hail West Texas, continuing her trajectory from safe house proprietor to murderer on the loose. The album is also loosely based on the Greek tragedy Seven from Thebes and sonically overstuffed enough to keep your average Broadway pit orchestra challenged and happy.
Bonus episode! Our guest for this Sunday edition of Transmissions is John Darnielle of the Mountain Goats. He’s got two albums out this year—first, a lo-fi boombox recorded tape, Songs for Pierre Chuvin, and now, Getting Into Knives, recorded with the full Mountain Goats band and producer Matt Ross-Sprang at Sam Phillips Recording in Memphis. John’s songs have hailed Satan and cast possums in a theological light. He’s written about myths, tragic heroes, and people trying to unwreck themselves. We were very excited to speak with him about his latest and much more.