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The Mountain Goats: Heretic PrideHeretic Pride (2008)
Reviewer Rating: 4.5
Contributed by: AnchorsAnchors
(others by this writer | submit your own)
Something that I think is becoming increasingly lost in music is something that should be regarded as its most important aspect: the art of storytelling. Sure, some bands' songs may tell of how the singer felt when his father passed away, or a rapper may tell of how he broke from poverty to a life o.
Something that I think is becoming increasingly lost in music is something that should be regarded as its most important aspect: the art of storytelling. Sure, some bands' songs may tell of how the singer felt when his father passed away, or a rapper may tell of how he broke from poverty to a life of privilege, and that's all well and good, but in both instances there's no real, tangible story. It's usually a sporadic recalling of events.
Well they come and pull me from my house, and they drag my body through the streets / And the sun's so hot I think I'll catch fire and burn up, in the summer air so moist and sweet / And the people all come out to cheer, rocks in the pathway break my skin / And there's honeysuckle on the faint breeze today, with every breath I'm drawing in / Crowds grow denser by the second, as we near the center of the town / And they dig a trench right in the main square right there, they pick me up and throw me down / And I start laughing like a child, I mark their faces one by one / Transfigurations gonna come for me at last, and I will burn hotter than the sun.In the face of indomitable odds, the man in this story stays true to himself until his very last breath, and Darnielle makes damn sure that his admirable defiance is not lost on anyone listening. The song might be about a heretic, a type of person not many can relate to in 2008, but the beauty of it, as with most Mountain Goats songs, is that the crux of the story is applicable to so many things. The song is just as profound when taken literally as figuratively, and the defiance of that man is equally reflected in the last words that Darnielle shouts:
I waited so long and now I taste jasmine on my tongue, and I feel so proud to be alive, and I feel so proud when the reckoning arrives.True to his last breath, Darnielle has once again, through such simple means, given a much larger picture for us all to think about. And you know what?
When I listen to this record, I feel so proud to be alive.
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