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The Decemberists: Newport Folk 2009

Taking a break from full-length performances of their latest album, The Hazards of Love, The Decemberists' members greeted the Newport Folk Festival crowd with old favorites, including a full-blown sing-along — most definitely in the spirit of Pete Seeger's hootenanny — of "Sons and Daughters."

For all its heady concept albums and prog-rock tendencies, it's easy to forget that The Decemberists started out by paying homage to late-'60s British folk. Bands like Fairport Convention, Pentangle and their various solo projects and offshoots heavily influence singer Colin Meloy.

The Decemberists' latest album, The Hazards of Love, revolves around shapeshifters, forest queens, dark fairytales and some girl named Margaret. It's a lot to take in at once, but it's worth the investment — as the band demonstrated when it performed the epic new album live in its entirety from SXSW. In that March concert, the characters that made up the sweeping story came to life, with Meloy guiding the action amid a heavier sound than that heard at Saturday's show.

Selected Songs

  • "The Crane Wife, Pt. 3"
  • "Yankee Bayonet (I Will Be Home Then)"
  • "Sons and Daughters"
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