The indie musician @mitskileaks released “Your Best American Girl,” the first single from her fourth studio album, last March. The simple bass line that opens the song should feel familiar to anyone who ever bobbed along with ’90s indie rock while indulging in self-pity (as most certainly did). @mitskileaks, who was born in Japan to a Japanese mother and an American father, murmurs and sighs and sings about a lover. Then, after the power chords kick in and the chorus lifts off: “Your mother wouldn’t approve of how my mother raised me/But I do, I think I do.” “Mothers have always held such symbolic weight in determining a person’s worth,” the author @jennybagel writes in @nytmag’s music issue. “Your mother tongue, your motherland, your mother’s values — these things can qualify or disqualify you from attaining myriad American dreams.” So, Does Mitski’s narrator really approve of how her mother raised her? “It’s unclear,” @jennybagel writes, “but you can hear in her voice just how much she wants to.” @erikmadiganheck took this portrait of #Mitski for @nytmag’s music issue. Visit the link in our profile to get @nytmag’s list of the 25 songs that tell us where music is going.