This is a tough one. It’s between Heretic Pride, Transcendental Youth, or Beat the Champ. To be honest I go for songs more than specific albums. Any folk song about being sad or angry can get its hooks into me.
My friend Dave in college introduced me - we were watching Morel Orel together and the series finale ends with No Children over the end credits. I asked him if he knew who was playing. He told me and said I would really like them. He was right!
There are so many! The Mountain Goats are so good at summing up depression as an experience. “I am just a bro-ken machine / and I do things that I don’t really mean” won me over when I first started listening. I have more that I kick around my head. “Wake up sixty minutes after my head hits the pillow / I can't live like this / And in the shower I am a sailor / Standing waiting, ready for the ship to list” encapsulates what depression is like for me. I’ve experienced that exact moment in my life many times. I feel strange sometimes relating to John Darnielle as he has, on paper, had a much harder life than me.
So I like to say I listen to about ten bands total. That’s not honest but it’s close. I love folk, ska, and alt pop-rock as genres but I hold few bands as favorites. But during my life I’ve collected some - specifically the Aquabats, They Might Be Giants, and Frightened Rabbit. If you want a more moody, electric, Scottish version of the Mountain Goats, I recommend that last one.
Mountain Goats specific? I was so hyped for In League with Dragons. I don’t think anything that was put about would have lived up to the low-fi folk-polk D&D album I had in my head. All time? I went to see My Brother, My Brother, and Me live and the show was… fine. If you don’t know it’s a comedy podcast that got very popular after they began a spin-off D&D podcast. I’m sure part of it was the show being just okay but I had a strong, hipster I-was-into-them-before-they-were-cool stink on for the whole evening.
No Children. As a depressed late teen in college, fresh out of my first relationship it was EXACTLY what I wanted. That led to Autoclave and so many others. Midnight Organ Fight by Frightened Rabbit is a whole album dedicated to that feel if you want more.
Lakeside View I always took a sort of ode to toxic friendships of the past and losing people to your own inner demons. While it is not entirely off the mark there, the song is about missing dead friends who have died from drug use and that has never been a factor in my life.
Pumpkin Spice is Bullshit. That spice mix is apple pie spice and should be known as such. Also - a savory-sweet latte? Is that really what you want?
Plating and food presentation. I do a lot of home cooking as a necessity and hobby. I get most of my recipes from YouTube celebrities and their dishes are beautiful. My dishes taste good but don’t look it. I think I lack a certain manual grace that’s required for it.
It might be weird to relate to cartoon characters but for a majority of my childhood I wanted to be one when I grew up.
Warming up a cold bed with my own body heat. It’s one of my favorite things to do and costs nearly nothing.