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- Posted on Jan 18th 2011 7:30AM by Julian Marszalek
Anthony Pidgeon, Redferns
Not so the Decemberists, who have eschewed the sound and themes that have made their name to return to the musical roots that inspired them in the first place. For the band's Colin Meloy, this meant going back to the R.E.M. of the mid-80s -- so much so that band's guitarist Peter Buck was recruited to play guitar and mandolin on three tracks of the Decemberists' new album, 'The King Is Dead.'
Speaking to Billboard.com, Meloy explained how the collaboration came about saying, "On a lot of songs I wrote for this record, I was trying to free my mind from more academic music interests I had over the last four or five years and trying to reconnect with some of the music that initially got me playing guitar and writing songs in the first place."
He continued, "So I started writing these boldfaced R.E.M. songs, and I thought, 'If we're going to go there, it would be fun to get Peter [Buck] to get onboard,' and he was totally into it."
Not that the Decemberists will totally jettison the sound which endeared them to fans in the first place, said Meloy.
"It'll be fun to revisit some of the longer stuff-the song cycles-but obviously there will be some stuff that we just won't be able to do," Meloy said. "Which is fine ... with as long as we've been around, we aren't starving for more options."