Melodic. Soaring refrains. Even as the words fade, the humming draws circle eights around your heart. Folksy, disjointed prog-rock and lush crazy arrangements, as expected, but also disco guitars, rock riffs, and a duet with Laura Veirs.
There are stories, too. The Decemberists, particularly Colin Meloy, can't help but to weave words into tales cautionary, or Canterbury rusty lyric. But there is grace in the primitive telling---not nostalgia, but a studied stubbornness on eloquence.
The Crane Wife is a curious beast. There is both overwhelming emptiness and infectious childlike glee. A melancholy that is more an impression than a feeling. A smile that can't be contained when Meloy asks us to fill our moths with cinnamon now.
And it's the memory of the smile that makes you want to give this record a spin over and over again.