The Decemberists


We All Raise Our Voices to the Air (Live Songs 04.11-08.11) Rough Trade****

Anything can and will happen at a Decemberists concert. Ghosts sing from beyond the grave; murderers gleefully confess their crimes; strange, mythical creatures take on human form; and, at the show’s climax, the entire audience gets swallowed by a whale. And all this without pyrotechnics or special effects. This 20-track live album documents the Portland, Oregon band’s hugely successful 2011 tour, and features jangly psychedelia, Irish jigs, country-folk airs, prog-rock wigouts and sea shanties, as well as what bespectacled leader Colin Meloy says is the worst song he ever wrote. That ditty apart, the rest of the set is a dizzyingly eclectic selection from The Decemberists’ six albums and debut EP, recorded at 12 concerts around the US. An immersive experience indeed.

Download tracks: Calamity Song, The Rake’s Song, Down By the Water