The Decemberists at the Riviera

[Decemberists at the Riviera]

A few thoughts in retrospect of the Decemberists show a couple weeks ago:

  • By my count, they only played 13 songs, but since three of those were more than ten minutes each.
  • I never thought I’d see a show which featured an accordion.
  • And like it.
  • Nor did I ever expect to see a large, papier mache whale at a concert.
  • Show highlights: a super-charged “July, July,” “The Mariners Revenge” featuring the aforementioned whale, and “The Island,” a song that just begs to be played live
  • I would have liked to hear “California One.”
  • The Decemberists are more well known for rambling tales of sailors and civil war era soldiers than overt political statements. However, they did play their two most political songs, “16 Military Wives” and “Sons and Daughters,” and requested audience participation on both.
  • I am prepared to say that next to Jack White, Colin Meloy has the best thing going in music right now.
  • The Riviera theater was built in 1918 and has enjoyed a rich history, but it’s been neglected for far too long. There’s potential for the place to be as cool as one of the venues in San Francisco, but as it stands, it’s a dump.

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