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In League with Dragons Image
Metascore
77

Generally favorable reviews - based on 14 Critics What's this?

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8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 8 Ratings

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  • Summary: The 17th full-length studio release for the indie folk band led by John Darnielle was produced by Owen Pallett.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 14
  2. Negative: 0 out of 14
  1. Apr 26, 2019
    93
    With 16 albums behind them, it would be easy to repeat themselves and crank out another dull routine. But Darnielle and company have more respect for their audience than that, producing an album with the potency to draw in new listeners and give thanks to those already in their company.
  2. 90
    We have the most lush Mountain Goats record to date: Pallett was the perfect producer for the album.
  3. May 20, 2019
    80
    While The Mountain Goats will always remain an acquired taste, there’s a case to put that In League With Dragons is possibly one of their most accessible albums. The collaboration with Pallett is a smart one for sure, and Darnielle has refused to let age dull his edge or mischievous eye for lyrical detail.
  4. Apr 30, 2019
    74
    In League With Dragons is light on mythical beasts; only four songs here come from the original wizard musical Darnielle was writing. Instead, he fills the record with the subjects of his own escapist fantasies. ... The record occasionally delves into the arcane, as Mountain Goats records can.
  5. May 14, 2019
    70
    It's generally a low-key record, Darnielle's trademark cadence layered over gentle, lulling tones including gorgeous piano lines ("Possum By Night," which contains the delightful refrain "Grow fat and grow old, go blind and be content"), western acoustic strum (the title track, replete with breathy backing vocals and pedal steel solo), and church organ (the rather epic chant of "Going Invisible 2").
  6. Apr 30, 2019
    70
    Dragons has taken some getting used to. With each listen, new details emerge.
  7. Uncut
    Apr 25, 2019
    60
    Despite the glistening production and seamless craft of it all, his wired intensity is often missed. [Jun 2019, p.32]

See all 14 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Apr 27, 2019
    10
    Phenomenally good. Easily one of the best records of their career. The fluctuation between mysticism and realism in the songwriting creates aPhenomenally good. Easily one of the best records of their career. The fluctuation between mysticism and realism in the songwriting creates a really satisfying juxtaposition of moods and ideas. There is a depth to these songs that is clearly apparent in the voicing, even if the meaning can remain elusive. The band sounds freed from the more restrictive concepts grounding 'Goths' and 'Beat the Champ'. If you never listened to the Mountain Goats before, this might be the perfect place to start. As a longtime fan, I couldn't be happier. It feels like the start of a new chapter. Or a new book, even. Expand