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Castaways and Cutouts

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Castaways and Cutouts

Artist: Decemberists (Recorded By)

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Label: Kill Rock Stars
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Album: Castaways and Cutouts
# Song Title   Time
1)    Leslie Anne Levine
2)    Here I Dreamt I Was an Architect
3)    July, July!
4)    Cautionary Song, A
5)    Odalisque
6)    Cocoon
7)    Grace Cathedral Hill
8)    Legionnaire's Lament, The
9)    Clementine
10)    California One Youth and Beauty Brigade

Performer Notes
  • The Decemberists: Colin Meloy (vocals, guitar, percussion); Chris Funk (pedal steel guitar, Theremin); Jenny Conlee (accordion, piano, Fender Rhodes, organ); Nate Query (upright & bowed bass); Ezra Holbrook (drums, percussion, background vocals).
  • Personnel: Colin Meloy (vocals, guitar, percussion); Chris Funk (guitar, Theremin); Jenny Conlee (accordion, piano, Fender Rhodes piano); Nate Query (upright bass); Ezra Holbrook (drums, percussion).
  • Recording information: Are You Listening (01/2002-02/2002).
  • With CASTAWAYS AND CUTOUTS, their 2002 debut, the Decemberists established themselves as one of the most noteworthy indie pop acts on the scene. Like Neutral Milk Hotel and Belle and Sebastian, the Decemberists specialize in wistful, melancholic pop with heavy folk influences, strong melodies, intimate atmospheres, and highly evocative lyrics. Led by Colin Meloy's distinctive voice and unique instrumentation that includes accordion, organ, and upright bass, the Decemberists successfully pull off the feat of merging an emotive, bedroom-troubador aesthetic with a sharp and endearing pop sensibility.
  • The minor-key opener "Leslie Anne Levine" announces the band's m.o.: this is moody, sensitive music that spins yarns of the downtrodden and outcast. Shifting, multi-part epics like "Odalisque" offer a counterpoint to streamlined rock-influenced tunes like "July, July!," and it doesn't get any better than "Here I Dreamt I Was An Architect," featuring Meloy's beautiful, image-rich lyrics and a melody that melts in the mind. From its admirable songcraft to its haunting arrangements, CASTAWAYS AND CUTOUTS holds up to repeated listenings, and adds up to one of the best indie pop debuts of the era.

Professional Reviews
Magnet (10/02, pp.85-6) - "...CASTAWAYS is a fresh concoction of charming, artful music. Dig in..."

CMJ (5/12/03, p.9) - "...A vividly imaginative and beautifully orchestrated collection of folk songs..."

Producer:The Decemberists
Format:CD (0 Disc); Stereo
Studio/Live: Studio
Release Date:1 May, 2009

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1 review(s)
All Reviews
D on
the album art is great but the music is better. the decemberists demonstrate some of their best stuff on this album with songs like Here I Dreamt I Was An Architect, the Legionnaire's Lament and Grace Cathedral Hill. buy this if you have their other albums or if you like the sound of indie pop music.

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