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Roots & Influences

Artist Song Buy
R.E.M.  Cuyahoga   buy on itunes
U2  Sunday Bloody Sunday   buy on itunes
The Replacements  Unsatisfied   buy on itunes
Siouxsie and the Banshees  Dear Prudence   buy on itunes
The Kinks  Sunny Afternoon   buy on itunes
Neutral Milk Hotel  The King of Carrot Flowers, Pt. 1   buy on itunes
The Magnetic Fields  I Don't Believe You   buy on itunes
XTC  Sgt. Rock (Is Going to Help Me)   buy on itunes
Robyn Hitchcock  Uncorrected Personality Traits   buy on itunes
The Waterboys  Fisherman's Blues   buy on itunes
Morrissey  Suedehead   buy on itunes
Anne Briggs  Blackwater Side   buy on itunes
The Beautiful South  I'll Sail This Ship Alone   buy on itunes
Fairport Convention  Come All Ye   buy on itunes
Shirley Collins & Albion Country Band  Murder of the Maria Marten   buy on itunes
The Jayhawks  Sister Cry   buy on itunes
Nic Jones  The Humpback Whale   buy on itunes


Few bands have the sheer vocabulary and vision of The Decemberists; working with such a vast canvas, they've thoughtfully — no, gleefully — drawn from every shade of the sonic palette. If you thought Mumford & Sons were the first to rediscover Brit-folk's golden era, think again: half-a-decade earlier, The Decemberists tapped into the electric socket of Fairport Convention's Brit-to-the-bone folk anthem "Come All Ye" for inspiration. Not only did they pick up a tip or two on constructing a concept album from Pink Floyd, but they dug into the crates even further for a taste of jangly psych-pop from Floyd's first single, "Arnold Layne." R.E.M.'s stripped-down take on roots-rock, heard here on "Cuyahoga," left a big muddy footprint on The Decemberists' latest album; in fact, R.E.M.'s Peter Buck guests on several tracks. And we can't forget The Jayhawks, whose twin-harmony twang in "Sister Cry" marries indie to Americana in one gorgeous gleam. From U2 to Siouxsie & the Banshees to XTC, The Decemberists have taken their cues from both large and small, far and wide.
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