Back Catalog: The Decemberists’ The Tain

on Friday, Mar. 4th

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Before I encountered


com/”>The Decemberists, but not really given them much of a chance

This seems to be a pattern with me and the bands who go on to be my absolute favorites

Somehow an image of their typical fan enters into my head and becomes a turn-off, or some dreadful ex-roommate’s passion for the band keeps me at bay

The latter is how I ended up avoiding Radiohead up until Kid A

In the case of The Decemberists it was an instinctive disdain for the proto-hipster

During the mid-aughts that breed of vintage nee thrift store shopping urban cultural cancer was busy metastasizing

In my mind, the two went hand and hand and I wanted to steer clear

It wasn’t until I found a disc in the car of my friend Anthony- a black dude from Compton who went to Yale and wound up on Survivor :Fiji – that I thought maybe there was something up

I knew Anthony’s taste in music and my own were, at the time, virtually identical

So I decided to head on down to where every self-respecting music head in the Bay Area goes when it’s time to go shopping:


org/wiki/Táin_Bó_Cúailnge”>Táin Bó Cúailnge, an Irish Epic that is one of the most bawdy, bloody, and magical stories I’ve ever read

What begins as boisterous pillow talk between Queen Medb (pronounced may-ve) of Connacht and her husband about which of them is richer turns into a bloody war waged for pride and wealth

Medb wants the prize bull of Ulster so she can one up her husband, and gathers an army made up of most of Ireland to take them on

While Ulster is populated with heroes, the men there live under a terrible curse for a past sin of pride

They suffer from horrible, labor like pains whenever war comes, keeping them from the battlefield until it is almost too late

All save for teenage hero


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