The Mountain Goats is the musical project of singer-songwriter and guitarist John Darnielle. The New Yorker magazine referred to him as "America’s best non-hip-hop lyricist." In its June 2006 issue, Paste magazine named Darnielle one of the "100 Best Living Songwriters." Darnielle’s lyrics are literate and filled with imagery that reference classic literature, religion and mythologies, pop culture, art, and history. Others are vague references to his stepfather, and with the 2005 album The Sunset Tree Darnielle offered a more intimate account of his experience as an abused child.