The Sunset Tree - The Mountain Goats
The Sunset Tree Image

Universal acclaim - based on 28 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 29 Ratings

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  • Summary: John Darnielle recorded this 13-track Mountain Goats disc with the help of musicians John Vanderslice, Peter Hughes, Franklin Bruno and Scott Solter.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 28
  2. Negative: 0 out of 28
  1. The Sunset Tree is one of the most volatile, affecting and coherent records he’s made yet.
  2. While the material is at times uncomfortable and discomfiting, one can't help but be fascinated - and a little touched.
  3. 86
    Darnielle has not lost his talent for storytelling. [#15, p.99]
  4. The cleaned-up sound and aggressive posturing make The Mountain Goats sound like a youthful Bruce Springsteen backed by The Waterboys.
  5. This is a record that only Darnielle could pull off: in the hands of a less skilled writer and vocalist, it would fall flat or grate the nerves as so much hyperemotional posturing.
  6. He sometimes wastes these tales on coy indie-folk, but when he cuts to the bone... the results can be extraordinary. [13 May 2005, p.89]
  7. If you've ever wondered what growing up in middle-class 1970s America would have been like, these deeply personal revelations are for you. [30 Apr 2005, p.64]

See all 28 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 14
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 14
  3. Negative: 0 out of 14
  1. TonyR
    Dec 14, 2007
    Simply goodness all around from start to finish, to talk about just one song and leave others out would be bad on my part its one of my all time favorite albums and I can only wish more people would listen to it. Expand
  2. FelixA
    Feb 26, 2006
    Brilliant. Simply Brilliant. One of the most touching albums I have ever listened to.
  3. ScottH
    Aug 23, 2006
    A record written to extricate Darnielles pain over his abusive stepfather. Remorse for his silenced mother, and how not even death can free you from everything. Expand
  4. [Anonymous]
    May 28, 2005
    This is an unbelievably intimate piece of art. Genius at work...!
  5. ChristianW
    Aug 24, 2006
    One of the most emotionally charged albums ive ever heard. Almost every song bar one or two towards the middle makes a real impression and some of the lyrics left me blown away when I first heard them. It also starts and ends very strongly, being bookended by three amazing songs each side. Pale Green Things almost has me weeping every time I hear it, even though I've no idea who the racehorse lover with the dodgy heart is. Song for Dennis Brown has some of the best lyrics Ive heard anywhere and Dance Music has a beautiful melody and piano riff. Expand
  6. CThomas
    Jan 12, 2006
    I don't know why this didn't end up on the "best of '05" lists I've seen.
  7. RobB
    May 22, 2005
    This album has grown on me. At times, it sounds like a broadway show soundtrack, but overall, it's an endearing, honest and fun album. The production touches are minimal, but perfect. John Darnielle's voice is addictive. At first, I wasn't sure it was my tasted, but it sure has grown on me. His heartfelt lyrics are deliveredn rapidly in a mix between talking and singing. It's convinced me to seek out his live show when it comes to town in June and shell out another $10 on top of the CD purchase. Highlights of the album are This Year, Dance Music. A couple of fillers, but the 13 tracks taken together deliver a real memorable listening experience. Expand

See all 14 User Reviews