Amy and I went to see The Decemberists last night at Stubb's. We almost skipped the show because we were both just feeling tired, but we ended up making it, and I'm really glad.
The music was great, Colin Meloy was funny, and the crowd eventually got really into the spirit of things (after a sort of subdued start).
The Decemeberists are really cool. I've known about them for a long time, and I had even seen them at ACL Fest once before, but Amy's enthusiasm for the band sort of made me listen to them with fresh ears and gain a much greater appreciation for a band that I had always sort of liked but had never gotten really into.
Part of what changed my opinion was listening to the songs closely enough to really appreciate the lyrics and the thought that Colin Meloy puts into his songwriting. The Decemberists aren't really the kind of band that blow you away with the virtuosity of their musicianship, but Meloy is a really great lyricist, and the band is really good at creating music with mood and atmosphere that paints images, conveys emotion, and draws you into the songs.
And don't get me wrong- The Decemberists seem to be fine musicians, but musicianship just isn't at the heart of what they do. Sometimes the songs can be structurally complex, but you aren't going to hear a lot of solos, and any extended segments that carry on without words usually appear in the context of supporting the lyrical content.
Anyway, the show was really fun, and I'm really happy we went. Amy and I both enjoyed it an awful lot. Nice night, good crowd, really good music. I'll remember that one for a long, long time.