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Who needs a full opera? The Decemberists get the cinematic treatment Monday at Royce Hall

October 16, 2009 |  6:43 am


The Decemberists’
dramatic concept album “The Hazards of Love,” released in March, is in a word: creepy.  Written as the score to an aborted musical, the narrative themes include a homicidal father offing his children with foxglove, a protagonist who happens to be a deer by day, and a river that swallows star-crossed lovers.

Colin Meloy, frontman for the Portland, Ore.-based folk-pop group, says “ ’The Hazards of Love’ was intended to live in the woods, this dangerous place where strange and wonderful things occur.”

And by strange and wonderful, we think he meant creepy. Though the musical was never staged, the band did collaborate with a Los Angeles-based film collective to produce an animated accompaniment to the album, which they’ll screen -- and play live to -- for the first time at Royce Hall on Monday, Oct. 19.

We spoke with Meloy about the album’s macabre themes, the film’s psychedelic imagery, and whether he’s finally, reluctantly, accepting the term “rock opera.” Read the story here.

-- Alie Ward

Photo credit: Jack Plunkett / Associated Press