The Decemberists has more than just a large base of fans and critics–it has what most artists crave first and foremost–throngs of people who actually appreciate and respect their songwriting. I am definitely one in that throng.
This song is perhaps my favorite Decemberists song. It paints such a vivid picture in its chorus of “If only summer rain would fall/on the houses and the boulevards/and the sidewalk bagatelles it’s like a dream[…]” and with its pulsating first four lines that immediately transports the listener to the storyteller’s time, place, and mind. The wordplay is first-rate Decemberists wordsmithing. Who can deny the genius behind “Medicating in the sun/pinched doses of laudanum/longing for the old fecund-/-ity of my homeland”?