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The Decemberists - The Crane Wife CD (album) cover


The Decemberists


Prog Folk

3.99 | 172 ratings

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4 stars Now I see why The Decemberists are Progressive

This is my second album of The Decemberists, and this one is slightly harder to rate. Individual songs are easey enough after a few listens, but the Album as a whole is a bit harder. Unlike my first album from The Decemberists 'Her Magisty' which had a consistint feel all the way though, 'The Crane Wife' fluctuates slightly more. It moves from very hard rock, to very soft balids, to even (dare I say it) almost a pop/disco feel.

It's just like The Decemberists to start at the end. Anyone can start at the begining of the story, but isin't it more fun to start at the end and finish at the begining? Aparintly it is for the Crane Wife, starting the album off with 'The Crane Wife 3'. Its a wonderful way to start the album and set the mood. The story itself is told quite well after you listen to 'The Crane Wife 1+2'.

The Island, the best song on the album by far, and the best The Decemerists song I've heard yet is song 2. This is just a masterpease song. It has everything a good progressive song needs: good transistions from one sound to the next, complex peases and thoughtful lyrics. It has a beautiful opining, a perfict middle with beautiful keybord playing, and a wonderful soothing ending. This song alone would qualify the album for at least 3 stars alone.

The next two songs 'Yankee Bayonet (I Will Be Home Then)' and 'O Valencia!' are your tipical 'The Decemberists' songs. They sound like filler on this album after 'The Island' though. They really dont fit after the Island, but they're still good songs none the less.

Here is where I run into a problem with this album: 'The Perfect Crime #2' and 'When The War Came'. 'The Perfect Crime #2' is way too poppy and almost discoie for me, and 'When The War Came' is too 'hard rock' for The Decemberists. This could be from their new gitar player, but on this album, it does not fit well. I can tell they're trying to streach their herizon in music, but on this album it sounds like they've over streached their grasp. I always skip right on to the 'Shankill Butchers'.

The 'Shankill Butchers' gets the album back on track, its creepy beyond all words and I love every minuet of it. It's only the acostic gitrar and vocals. We then go back to the typical Decemberists sound with 'Summersong'. The Final song on the album 'Suns and Daughters' has the same feel and finishes the album off quite well. It ends on a much needed happy note.

This leaves us with 'The Crane Wife 1&2'. As I said, the album starts at the end, and ends at the start. Like the Island, this one has 2 distinct faces to the song, part one and two. The first part is very progressive and I cant help but love it. Although part two is the very soothing balid part of the album. I dont think it flows quite well with part one, but it's a very nice way to continue the song in relations to the story of the Crane Wife.

Overall, this is an Excellent album. The individual songs very, from Essential listinings for any progressive fan (The Island, The Crane Wife 1-3), to poor ('The Perfect Crime #2' and 'When The War Came'). At first I thought 3 stars to balance the great with the not so great, and the album really doesnt sound sound like a complete album and the songs don't overly flow perficly from one to the next. But then again, this album is when listining to the album, the great songs overpower those not so good ones, earning it a respectful 4 stars, but it is far from the full 5 stars.

4 stars, (even though its a 3.7 rounded up).

mothershabooboo | 4/5 |


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