Monday, March 23, 2009

ALBUM: The Hazards of Love


A little over a year and a half ago Chris and I realized we had attended one too many monster truck rallys/rodeos/demolition derbys and were perilously close to devolving into the detritus of society. So in order to retain a shred of culture in our lives, we got ourselves dates and attended a local presentation of the opera, Marriage of Figaro. (Usually we just take in a foreign film. Subtitles are a great resource for culture.)
Although when we found out the thing was three hours long and totally in Italian we almost didn't make it. (It was subtitled thank heavens.)
And if I'm being totally honest, I kind of enjoyed it.

And if I'm being totally honest about The Decemberist's The Hazards of Love, I'm more than enjoying it. I'm loving it.

Why the story about the opera? Just a fun little segue into this fun fact: The Hazards of Love is actually a rock-opera!
Congrats Decemberists at joining the illustrious ranks of The Who's Tommy and Pink Floyd's The Wall.

But with previous albums having multiple songs surpassing the ten-minute mark, who didn't see this coming?

The Decemberists have abandoned their past formula of albums composed of short-vignettes for one epic story played out through the entirety of the album. There is a cast of characters (voiced by a group of all-stars), recurring musical themes ranging anywhere from folky to heavy metal, and quite a bit of drama. (I won't spoil the ending for you.)

This album is nothing less than spectacular.

And as a special treat, The Decemberists debuted The Hazards of Love in its entireity at SXSW and you can stream it at NPRs website here.

UPDATE: Once again, a post has been taken down...this is getting out of hand. Go to Hype Machine or Elbo.ws and search for an mp3.

The Decemberists - The Rake's Song
from the album The Hazards of Love (Amazon/iTunes)

1 comment:

Jeff Luppino-Esposito said...

Very solid review! I just linked to it, keep up the good work - http://www.popsense.com/2009/03/decemberists-hazards-of-love-review.html