Get to know D.C. with our daily newsletter

We dive deep on the day’s biggest story and share links to everything you need to know.

John Darnielle of the Mountain Goats is at heart a storyteller: On “This Year,” from 2005’s The Sunset Tree, Darnielle declaims, “I downshifted as I pulled into the driveway, the motor screaming out stuck in second gear/The scene ends badly as you might imagine, in a cavalcade of anger and fear.” Onstage, his acoustic guitar is as insistent as his hyper-literate, eccentric lyrics. But it’s the between-song banter that really characterizes the live Darnielle experience. He told an Atlanta audience a few years ago, “We live in an age that preaches the value of new things…some new things suck gigantic asses all day long. This song is about a couple of people who are face-to-face with some of those gigantic asses to suck.” Tonight he’ll likely chatter between songs from two new limited-edition EPs, Satanic Messiah and Black Pear Tree—the second a collaboration with guitarist Kaki King, who opens this show.

THE MOUNTAIN GOATS PERFORM WITH KAKI KING AT 7 P.M. AT THE 9:30 CLUB, 815 V ST. NW, $17. (202) 265-0930.