Vous voulez voir cette page en français ? Cliquez ici.

CDN$ 28.95 + CDN$ 3.49 shipping
In Stock. Sold by Vanderbilt CA

or
Sign in to turn on 1-Click ordering.
More Buying Choices
Have one to sell? Sell yours here

The Tain [EP, Import]

The Decemberists Audio CD

Price: CDN$ 28.95
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
Only 1 left in stock.
Ships from and sold by Vanderbilt CA.

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought


Product Details


Product Description

Product Description

Recorded at the Hall of Justice, Seattle, WA August 2003. Travel with the Decemberists on this remarkably dynamic 18 minute epic ride.

Customer Reviews

There are no customer reviews yet on Amazon.ca
5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  16 reviews
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A radical departure Jan. 8 2005
By E. A Solinas - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Everyone knows the Decemberists as being a sort of light indie-pop/folk band, with slightly odd songs and a slightly sunny feel. Not the sort of band to do a mythic concept album, right? Wrong. In what may be their best release so far, the Decemberists released "The Tain," a rich musical reinterpretation of Irish legend.

It's basically one song in five movements, starting off with a quietly sneering song from the "Crone." It then switches to a dark mix of bass and electronic instrumentation, before changing again to a stately, mournful acoustic ballad, where Meloy's cries of "On this stretch of ground/I'll lay me down" are echoed by the "Chorus of Waifs."

The fourth movement opens with Rachel Blumberg's soft singing, over a muted Hammond ballad. The final part of this musical tapestry is mostly a conversation between a woman and daughter, a percussive rock song that snaps and snarls, before ending with another word from the Crone.

"Tain Bo Cualnge" was the inspiration for this EP -- it was originally a story about cattle raids and legendary heroes in ancient Ulster. The Decemberists only loosely retell it, through offbeat rock songs and peculiar ballads. What's really striking is the musical reinvention -- nowhere are the more charming tunes of their full-length albums. This is dark, it's rock, and it's wonderfully eerie.

Meloy and Co. don't let the dark tone of the old myth get away from them -- in the middle of the fourth part, they burst into a kind of Celtic carnival tune. I'm not sure what it's supposed to signify, except that it sticks closer to the musical traditions of Ireland. The writing only falters at the beginning; the first part is pretty vulgar, and lacks the mythic tone of the following songs.

Colin Meloy seems to have found his vocal niche here. While he just sounds odd in light songs, here he sounds like the long-lost brother of Billy Corgan. It's a sound that suits him. He sounds particularly good when singing intensely, drawing the word "blood" out to something like "Bloo-uh-ud!" And he fits against a backdrop of sharp percussion, solid riffs and basslines, as well as some majestic waves of Wurlitzer, Rhodes, and piano.

In "The Tain" EP, the Decemberists seem to have found what kind of music they do best. Let's hope Meloy and his band stick to this richer, more majestic sound.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing 18-minute ride! June 26 2005
By C. Wynes - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
The Decemberists have apparently realized that the late 60's actually happened. You can tell from the first 10 seconds of this record that they've gone to a place they couldn't go on their first two full-lengths. A heavily-plucked acoustic guitar riff opens this EP, and an alternate universe is laid before us in which Black Sabbath's intuitive understanding of confrontational minor key riffs had intersected with the raw edge of Yes' first album and the anthemic blues-riffs of early Jethro Tull. It's an alternate universe where King Crimson didn't take 8 years off from music but instead followed up "Red" with a powerful masterpiece of hard rock.

In a sudden and severe departure from their previous LPs, "The Tain" takes the Decemberists to another plane. The first two LPs are driven by clever lyricism and a merger of classic alt-country and indie-rock chord progressions. "The Tain" keeps the haunting melodies but finally gives the electric guitar something to do.

This EP loosely follows an ancient Celtic folk story, about which I know very little. I won't attempt to evaluate this record on the basis of the source material.

The first 5 minutes are excellent, and evoke memories of hearing King Crimson's "20th Century Schizoid Man" for the first time. The record is at its weakest from the 5 minute mark to the 10 minute mark, with a chord progression that loses the darker edge that opened the EP. This section is too long and drags a bit. Things pick up again from that point out. A female vocalist lends her talents, after which Colin comes back to the fore with a driving blues-guitar riff behind him. The EP concludes with a revisiting of the earlier musical themes.

It is something of a disappointment that the Decemberists didn't build from the new direction this EP could have taken them, that their subsequent full-length "Picaresque" sounds as if "The Tain" never happened.

If you have arrived at this page as a Decemberists fan, I recommend the EP if you are open to an enormous divergence from their previous works (and their follow-up) that puts the lead vocals to work in a different but equally suitable context. If you've never heard the Decemberists before, I would recommend this album if you enjoy late 60's and early 70's rock, and if you enjoyed prog rock from that era that favored the guitar over the organ.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant piece of work June 29 2004
By MDC - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
I was so fortunate to see this 5 movement piece performed live for the first time ever back in February in San Francisco, before the EP came out. I was even luckier to see this 5 movement piece performed live for the LAST time ever just a few days ago in the same venue in San Francisco. (that's the last time for the Decemberists, not just for me.) Anyway, this really is a stunningly beautiful work and, truth be told, it took me a few listens to wrap my head around it. If you're not careful you get lost in the sweeping movements of it...it's very expansive to the casual listener, but if you pay attention to it, it's very cozy...like a warm blanket. It's hard to describe, but this massive song simultaneously invites you to look at the big picture and pick apart the details, and whatever you end up doing you won't be dissappointed, for it is practically flawless.
The Decemberists is a band that is at the top of their game. At that second SF show I was so fortunate to hear a few songs from their as-yet-unrecorded third album and it's just as good as what preceded it. If you're not a Decemberists fan, you need to be.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars And now we�ve seen your powers, softly stretch the hours April 10 2004
By Jellybones - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
The Decemberists continue their musical assault on us in 2004 beginning with "The Tain", an 18 minute EP which is only one track but meanders through a number of movements as it re-interprets an 8th century Celtic poem. The opening movements starts with a loping and somewhat dusky guitar melody and Colin delivering his trademark witty lyricisms ("she's a salty little pisser"), but at about the two minute mark, it dives right into a rockin' mode, showcasing power guitar work and a bass line John Paul Jones would be proud of. There are bits of harmonizing worked in that are one of my most favorite parts. Coming upon the five minute mark, it drops more into a sound reminiscent of "Castaways and Cutouts" "Odalisque", marked however with a hint of reverb. A few minutes later it is uplifted with lyrics from Colin and backed harmonically by female vocals ("here come loose the hounds / to blow me down / on this stretch of ground / I'll lay me down"). Next we find ourselves in a most unusual portion of this release, opening with hushed almost girlish vocals, and piano/organ with an almost calliope, circus-y sound, which only build and grow and we progress. There are anonymous clangs and bashes mixed with light bell dings and drummer-boy percussion behind it all. Finally, we find ourselves immersed again in the elements of the opening movement, and this time I notice a slightly Black Sabbath-y tone.
I don't know what we can look forward to with The Decemberists, but I certainly AM looking forward to it. Sometimes accused of being a less daring Neutral Milk Hotel, this erases those doubts for me, as this adventure is daring, unusual, and well worth having alongside the other Decemberists releases if you are a fan.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Don't be too scared--this EP is something to check out! Feb. 9 2006
By Alex Urban - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Pencils tapping on desk tops, power-slam air-guitar, melodic swaying, and even a little history on classic literature: these are all bound to happen when you pop The Decemberists' The Tain into your CD Player. Between the release of their two latest CDs (Her Majesty and Picaresque), this five member orchestra made their latest EP, The Tain.

For those of you who know The Decemberist but wish to dig into their music, The Tain is a good place to start. This CD, in its nifty tri-fold case (lyrics included on each fold), gives a vague adaptation of the epic Irish poem Tain Bo Cauliage (The Tain). Colin Meloy, lead singer of the band, takes this original piece of literature that revolves around a disturbing cattle raid and a valiant hero, and then adds in a couple guitars, and an organ; a new breed of folk-pop is created. However, rather than burdening itself with definite references, Meloy gives the emotion and feeling of the story in one single track. This single track allows you to let the feeling of the music and story seep in instead of chopping each "chapter" up. The characteristic of having a one track CD is one that proves to be successful when trying to take in the CD as a whole for a better listening experience. However, those of you randomizing song skipping listeners, The Tain might not be for you.

Though it might seem like a bad idea to spend fifteen dollars at Sam Goody for one song, it is absolutely worth it; however, with any CD, some flaws can be found. The Tain may scare off new listeners to folk-pop with it's transitions from slammed distorted guitar chords to the slow accordion and chime melodies and variety of other strange instruments (organ, mandolin, Glockenspiel, tin toys...the list goes on forever), it still shouldn't stop people from buying it: this CD does have a lot going for it. It has everything a great Decemberists CD has to offer in one eighteen minute explosion of a symphony. However, it does lack some of the more upbeat songs Colin Meloy produces (like The Legionaries' Lament off of Cut outs and Cast Aways).

Personally, out of all of the EPs I've listened to, this is my favorite; consequently, it's always easy to find in my stereo. Each "Chapter" seems to have more of an oomph than some of the more well known songs by The Decemberists. If you're looking to go deeper into the scheme of The Decemberists, I'd suggest getting a hold of The Tain.
ARRAY(0xacfb0f00)

Look for similar items by category


Feedback