The Crane Wife - The Decemberists
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Universal acclaim - based on 33 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 147 Ratings

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  • Summary: 'Crane Wife' marks the literate, Colin Meloy-led band's major label debut.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 33
  2. Negative: 0 out of 33
  1. The band's most ambitious, mind-blowing, and best record yet.
  2. The Crane Wife is an album that nicely fits into the Decemberists' universe and has roots in earlier works, but sounds -- and hangs together -- better than any of them.
  3. As a sustained effort, it represents the band’s sharpest and most satisfying work, and one of the most accomplished albums of its kind this year.
  4. Oddly, the unconventional sequencing and measured pace of the album make the fragmented mess hold together quite well.
  5. 80
    The most tightly hook-larded, colorfully produced, listenable Decemberists record to date. [Nov 2006, p.138]
  6. Some cuts, like the English murder ballad "Shankill Butchers" and "Summersong"... sound like outtakes from previous records, but by the time the listener arrives at the Donovan-esque (in a good way) closer, "Sons & Daughters," the less tasty bits of The Crane Wife seem a wee bit sweeter.
  7. Most of The Crane Wife consists of rehashes of Decemberists staples and by-the-books, cookie-cutter indie pop that runs the gamut between pleasant enough ("O, Valencia!") and barely tolerable ("Summersong").

See all 33 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 84 out of 91
  2. Negative: 3 out of 91
  1. Dec 15, 2012
    Simply an amazing album. Pretty much every song is great. I remember first seeing the list of songs and seeing that there were two songs that were both over ten minutes long and was skeptical as to how any song could be that long without boring the listener. However, I was pleasantly surprised by their quality. This album is just amazing. Worth the money for sure! Collapse
  2. IdalecioC
    Oct 17, 2006
    I just give it a 10 because of O Valencia! ...without that it would be a 8-9
  3. JohnF
    Nov 6, 2006
    After much deliberation and close examination, I have decided that this is the best album of the year thus far and the best album the Decemberists have ever made. Expand
  4. AndrewP
    Oct 15, 2006
    Its about the songs; the harmonies, the hooks, the arrangements. Meloy is a true storyteller, in the sense that his characters become the songs. The best album of the year thus far. Expand
  5. jtc
    Dec 1, 2007
    This album is the bomb. Gets better every time I listen to it. If you like good original (yet accessible) music and songwriting, you'll like this album. If you don't, you won't. Expand
  6. AndyD
    Nov 27, 2006
    Good album, boring at times.
  7. NONo
    Jun 13, 2008
    Somethings terribly wrong... how can a crap band like this get raved reviews?

See all 91 User Reviews