The venerable semi-autobiographically confessional indie band moves to Merge, the Grammy-winning Indie Label That Could for its 13th album, and gets a little less semi-autobiographically confessional. Where previous Mountain Goats records have laid bare addiction and abuse, “All Eternals Deck’’ is decidedly more veiled, marked by singer-songwriter John Darnielle’s increasingly opaque emotional canvas. There is trial and guarded promise in these songs, with Darnielle’s restless voice finding human constants in even the most nonhuman of scenarios. “Feast like pagans, never get enough / Sleep like dead men, wake up like dead men,’’ he sings on “Damn These Vampires.’’ Although the band remains, reliably, the same in many ways — the sparse arrangement and caffeinated wit of “Estate Sale Sign’’ is the band at its folk-punk best — they continue to sound more like big-picture thinkers grasping for something baldly universal. (Out tomorrow) ZETH LUNDY
ESSENTIAL “Birth of Serpents’’
The Mountain Goats play a sold-out show with Megafaun at the Paradise on April 1.