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Photo by Jeremy M. Lange

Recommended

The Mountain Goats

May 17
8 p.m.
$30
Americana, Rock, Singer-Songwriter

Although the title and cover illustration of the Mountain Goats’ new album, In League With Dragons, suggests an immersion in fantasy, it’s dominated as always by John Darnielle’s chief forte: detailed character studies. Darnielle’s disparate focus includes a pitcher’s disintegrating career (“Doc Gooden”), a rocker’s desperate bravado (“Passaic 1975”), and a shady operator’s risky business (“Waylon Jennings Live!”), all linked by fading dreams and lurking tragedy. The shifting music hangs on evocative melodies and Darnielle’s dry vocals, distantly echoing Phil Ochs’. Shana Cleveland opens.