Wednesday, April 06, 2005

The Decemberists favorite letter? RRRRRRRRR!

So I thought the Decemberists really sucked earlier this year when I listened to Her Majesty the Decemberists. But, it grew on me and now I really like what these bunch of quasi pirates are doing. Weird, at times, but pretty cool poppy music with a vitamin C infused lack of Scurvvvvvvy... From their new album Picaresque check out this review (from Amazon) and grab these songs before they dissappear:

"Picaresque" is perhaps the most perfect Decemeberists' album to date. It still retains the familiar conceits of sea chanties and Victorian melodrama, typified by songs like "From My Own True Love (Lost at Sea)" and "Eli, the Barrowboy," a beautiful folk song about an evidently consumptive barrowboy who sells "coals and marigolds." But it expands the Decemberists nautical palette to include a track like "The Sporting Life", a whimsical Belle & Sebastian-esque song about a young inept athlete who dreads going out for sports at school.

Even better is "Sixteen Military Wives." This is utterly unlike ANYTHING the Decemberists have ever attempted, a perfect anti-war pop song with the catchiest chorus this side of the Beatles. It's implaccable beat and minor key verses trip along effortlessly to a military rhythm that soars into a sunny singalong chorus, complete with honking saxophones and tambourines. Don't be put off too much by its anti-war message, however; it's equally indictive of celebrity culture and brainless anchormen. And frankly, I think you'll be dancing too much to be overly concerned.

A final highlight is "The Infanta", a cacophony of thunderous drums and appropriately picaresque lyrics that rolls on as implacable and unyielding as a troop of janissaries swarming over the bulwarks of a Spanish galleon. And it is also the only song in the history of music that manages to rhyme "falderal" and "chaparral." For that achievement alone, "Picaresque" earns its 5 stars. An album I cannot recommend highly enough."

On a non musical note, I had a kick ass swim tonight and got through my first 400 meters in one run. On the whole i swam a half mile which is a new accomplishment for me as well. 30 minute bike ride afterwords. All in all a good day.


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