Where Do My Readers Come From?

Friday, March 15, 2013

The Decemberists

I have written about this band before and I am sure that I will do so again. But thanks to some random occurrences in the last couple of days they are on my brain today. One of those random things being on the television show The Office last night. The episode last night was them attempting to start a spin off of of called The Farm. It was not picked up by NBC so there will not be any further adventures of the Schrute family and life on the beet farm. But one of the cooler things that they did on the show, was that they sat around as a family and sung a song by The Decemberists called "Sons and Daughters".  That was a small moment in the show, but I am a sucker for those kind of small musical moments in television shows so it totally worked for me.

Then this morning I read a review of the episode at AV.Club and the reviewed mentioned the entire album that the song came from. The album is called The Crane Wife and it is an awesome concept album. It isn't a concept in that the whole album covers one story but their are three kind of story cycles. The first one being a Japanese folk tale called "The Crane Wife"  about a man who heals a wounded crane and releases it. When the crane leave a young women appears at his door and they fall in love. They need money and the wife offers to weave some lovely silk clothes to sell at market but tells the husband that he can't ever watch her sew. As time goes on they begin to sell more and more clothes and the husbands greed begins to grow and the wife begins to grow sickly. He decides to peek in and watch her sewing because he is wanting more and more cloth from her and it turns out she is a crane and is sewing the clothes from the feathers that she is plucking from her own body. She sees him and flies away, leaving him eventually broke and alone. The song "When The War Came" is about the siege of Leningrad  and  "The Shankill Butchers" is a song set during the problems in Ireland and tells a story about a gang made up of members of the Ulster Volunteer Force they were Protestants and kidnapped and killed several Catholics as well as setting off explosives and may have killed as many as 32 people during their activities. All these stories together on the same album just make for a perfectly mixed album. So being thus encouraged I decided that I was going to listen to the entire album and not just put the music player on album. 

The whole album is like reading a book. In fact I would love to see a stage show or film made of the whole thing. It could be a Quadrophenia for the post millenium generation. Here are some videos.

All three parts of The Crane Wife sung by Colin Meloy.

When The War Came

The Shankill Butchers

Sons and Daughters

Listen to these and enjoy them, I know that I will be over and over again. 
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