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Mitski: Tiny Desk Concert

Watching Mitski perform at my desk, there are moments when I was worried for her. In her opening song, "Townie," the boys "are driving and they'll be drinking" — and a verse later, Mitski sings of love in ways that feel vengeful, not fruitful.

Moments later, she holds her guitar high with her mouth close to the pickup, which acts like a microphone as she screams to her mother for help:

Then, she closes with a song of dying in the hope of leaving a tidy room and being well-regarded when they come get her things. If it all sounds depressing, it is, but the glimmer of beauty comes in her smile and laugh at the end of her set. It's part nerves, part angst, and it all makes for a heartfelt performance sans filters: That's why Mitski Miyawaki is such an incredible performer. At night, at a club with the lights down and drinks in hand, it can be more pensive for all — more thought-provoking. But here in an office, the starkness somehow makes her music even scarier.

Set List

  • "Townie"
  • "Class Of 2013"
  • "Last Words Of A Shooting Star"


Credits

Producers: Bob Boilen, Morgan Walker; Audio Engineer: Josh Rogosin; Videographers: Morgan Walker, Lani Milton; Assistant Producer: Elena Saavedra Buckley; photo by Lydia Thompson/NPR

Copyright 2024 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Bob Boilen
In 1988, a determined Bob Boilen started showing up on NPR's doorstep every day, looking for a way to contribute his skills in music and broadcasting to the network. His persistence paid off, and within a few weeks he was hired, on a temporary basis, to work for All Things Considered. Less than a year later, Boilen was directing the show and continued to do so for the next 18 years.