Support Local Journalism. Join Riverfront Times Press Club.

The Decemberists 

The Crane Wife (Capitol)

If he hadn't found a successful career in music, Colin Meloy would've made a kick-ass history teacher. Since 2002's Castaways and Cutouts, the eccentric songwriter and Decemberists frontman has told tales of pirates, Civil War refugees and Chinese trapeze artists with flair, like a long-winded Dennis Miller ranting in song. Meloy's yarn-weaving lyrical style continues with his band's latest release, The Crane Wife, but there are some substantial musical differences this time around. "The Crane Wife 3," the album's opening track, forgoes the accordions and most of the colloquialisms of albums past, opting instead for forthright vocals and acoustic guitars. Meloy also seems to have developed a penchant for '70s prog, the most effective simulacrum of which takes place around the eight-minute mark of "The Island: Come and See/The Landlord's Daughter/You'll Not Feel the Drowning." Every once in a while, the band's old style bubbles to the surface. Sometimes it works; sometimes it doesn't. The important thing, though, is that the Decemberists continue to push forward — even though they're still singing about stuff that took place centuries ago. <

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Riverfront Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Riverfront Times Club for as little as $5 a month.

Speaking of...

More by Aaron Ladage

Read the Digital Print Issue

June 16, 2021

View more issues


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In St. Louis

© 2021 Riverfront Times

Website powered by Foundation