Her Majesty

( 9 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Heather Phares
On Her Majesty, the Decemberists' follow-up to their excellent debut, Castaways and Cutouts, the group cements its reputation as a seafaring Belle & Sebastian or a more grounded Neutral Milk Hotel. Tying together sweet symphonic pop with a ragtag theatricality, this album is more ambitious and more scattered than Castaways and Cutouts, making it an initially less accessible and more difficult listen. However, many of Her Majesty's most indulgent moments are among its best, including the high drama of the album opener, "Shanty for the Aretheusa," an epic that runs with the dark beauty that haunted the corners of the Decemberists' debut and gives it a wild, rambling ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Heather Phares
On Her Majesty, the Decemberists' follow-up to their excellent debut, Castaways and Cutouts, the group cements its reputation as a seafaring Belle & Sebastian or a more grounded Neutral Milk Hotel. Tying together sweet symphonic pop with a ragtag theatricality, this album is more ambitious and more scattered than Castaways and Cutouts, making it an initially less accessible and more difficult listen. However, many of Her Majesty's most indulgent moments are among its best, including the high drama of the album opener, "Shanty for the Aretheusa," an epic that runs with the dark beauty that haunted the corners of the Decemberists' debut and gives it a wild, rambling edge. Likewise, "The Gymnast, High Above the Ground" also displays the band's expertise at creating subtle but palpable drama and swooning romanticism with just a few musical brush strokes. The wonderfully named "I Was Meant for the Stage," a triumphantly bittersweet song for the inner drama queen in everyone, shows off Colin Meloy's uniquely expressive voice: at one moment he's lispingly fey; the next, he's sneering self-deprecatingly. These beautiful, challenging songs make the band's occasional dips into treacle, such as the cloying "Billy Liar," forgivable, but what makes Her Majesty such a solid album is the consistent quality of the songs pitched between its high and low points. "Los Angeles, I'm Yours" flirts with soft rock, coming across as a latter-day single from Al Stewart; "Your Red Right Ankle" is an intimately and creatively detailed love song; and "Song for Myla Goldberg" has a sunny, winning appeal. Even though Her Majesty isn't quite as striking and full-formed as Castaways and Cutouts, it's still a consistently charming album that finds the band coming into its own.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/9/2003
  • Label: Kill Rock Stars
  • UPC: 759656037525
  • Catalog Number: 60375
  • Sales rank: 5,506

Album Credits

Performance Credits
The Decemberists Primary Artist
Kenneth Erlick Hand Clapping
Rachel Blumberg Organ, Percussion, Drums, Glockenspiel, Background Vocals, Vibes, Soloist
David Lipkind Chromatic Harmonica
Chris Funk Dobro, Percussion, Pedal Steel Guitar, Electric Guitar, oberheim, Lap Steel Guitar
Colin Meloy Acoustic Guitar, Percussion, Electric Guitar, Vocals
Jenny Conlee Percussion, Piano, Accordion, Hammond Organ, Background Vocals, fender rhodes, Wurlitzer, Piano (Upright)
Jesse Emerson Percussion, Electric Bass, Upright Bass
Lucia Atkinson Violin
Bridget Callahan Viola
Emily Cox Violin
Carson Ellis screams
Cory Gray Trombone, Trumpet, Hand Clapping
Mike Lah Cello
Technical Credits
Larry Crane Producer, Engineer
John Golden Mastering
Mike Johnson String Arrangements
Bradley Clark Producer
Adam Selzer Producer, Engineer
The Decemberists Producer
Colin Meloy Composer
Carson Ellis Illustrations
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 9 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(6)

4 Star

(3)

3 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Classic

    The best include: "Billy Liar", probably the one and only anthem of summertime adolescent boredom "Los Angeles, I'm Yours" and "Song for Myla Goldberg", a somber, poppy tribute to L.A. and a more N.M.H.-ish one to N.Y.C. respectively "The Bachelor and the Bride", a depressive and utterly beautiful song that is the best and worst choice for the prom slow dance, the lyrics being the latter reason and "The Chimbley Sweep", a catchy, dark, and short little ditty during the Victorian era (the live versions are usually fabulous but muddled).

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    beautiful symphonic melody

    If you don't have this CD already your life is empty. The Decemberists are an amazing band that succesfully span all types of songs and lyrics. Songs to fall asleep to, songs to dance to, and songs to reflect. It has everything. and colin meloy has the most uniques and amazing voice.

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    Posted December 5, 2008

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    Posted May 3, 2009

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    Posted June 24, 2009

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    Posted October 31, 2008

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    Posted February 25, 2009

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    Posted November 1, 2008

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    Posted March 23, 2009

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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews