Staff pick: Mitski at the Athenaeum Theatre

Joel Oliphint
joliphint@columbusalive.com

When Mistski visited Malaysia, where the singer and multi-instrumentalist spent part of her childhood, she wasn't prepared for the crushing loneliness she felt wandering a now-foreign country on her own. The trip inspired the song “Nobody,” from her excellent 2018 album, Be the Cowboy.

“My God, I'm so lonely, so I open the window to hear sounds of people,” Mistski sings before getting to the chorus, which is just one word the artist has said she repeated over and over again during a breakdown on that Malaysia trip: “Nobody.”

“Lonesome Love” and other tracks get at a similar idea, butBe the Cowboy, believe it or not, isn't a depressing listen. It's melodically joyful and full of complexities that mirror her inner life, along with some beautifully simple, universal couplets: “I don't want your pity/I just want somebody near me.”

8 p.m. Saturday, March 30

32 N. Fourth St., Downtown

ALSO PLAYING: Jay Som

Athenaeum Theatre