Merge Takes a Few Hours Off From the Arcade Fire Extravaganza to Sign the Mountain Goats

Farewell, 4AD logo
Farewell, 4AD logo

North Carolina indie titan Merge is having a good week. Two days ago, the long-awaited third Arcade Fire record, The Suburbs, came out to tremendous acclaim, some consternation, and one hell of a New York show last night at MSG. And today, the label announced two new signings: the Mountain Goats, John Darnielle's long-running, completely beloved (by us, anyway) indie-folk outfit; and the Extra Lens, formerly known as the Extra Glenns, Darnielle's side project with the critic and songwriter Franklin Bruno. The latter have a new album, Undercard, on the way; the record's first single, "Only Existing Footage," is available at Pitchfork. There are a lot of convergences at work here: Darnielle lives in the same North Carolina town as Merge's Mac McCaughan and Laura Ballance. Those two also perform as Superchunk (along with sometime Mountain Goats drummer Jon Wurster), and Darnielle sings backup on the band's incredible new record. Indie rock is a small town, and these people are all the mayors of it. Plus: one more reason to like the Arcade Fire! [Pitchfork]

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