Present "Picaresque" Released: 07/08/05 by The Decemberists'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'. but it expands the decemberists nautical palette to include a track like 'the sporting life', a whimsical belle and 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. 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. with death cab for cutie's chris walla on board as producer, the band seems poised to reach the greater audience they deserve on rough trade.
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Formats: Download RTRADDA 256 CD RTRADCD 256 12" LP RTRADLP 256