EskwireD’s Top Pick #2: The Chimbley Sweep by The Decemberists

Track: The Chimbley Sweep
Artist: The Decemberists
Album: Her Majesty the Decemberists (2003)
Genre: Indie Folk Rock

Despite being on one of The Decemberists‘ not-as-good-as-the-other-ones albums, “The Chimbley Sweep” is one of my favourite songs by them. When listening to music, I have several personal preferences that give me great joy. Among these are syncopation, accordions, and a walking bass line; all of which are covered in this song. A song about a homeless chimney sweep who is down on his luck, “The Chimbley Sweep” gets right down to business with a strong, resonating chord on the guitar. A walking bass line and a simple drum beat come in shortly afterward and keeps up the momentum for the song’s entirety. The accordion is also present, emphasizing syncopated off-beats. The guitar is heard intermittently as well, providing amazing support with its powerful, almost overwhelming chords. Overall, the song is quite catchy with some kick-ass guitar and accordion solos peppered in for good measure. As always, Meloy’s quivering voice gets to me. He is such an awesome and unique vocalist. The widow has a pretty good voice as well, matching Meloy’s quite nicely. When I saw The Decemberists in concert last February, they played this song as the first of their two encores (the second being “The Mariner’s Revenge Song”, a piece I will undoubtedly feature in the future). It was amazing. Meloy has incredible power in his voice, despite its inherent waviness. There was even some audience participation as we were all instructed to crouch down low on the floor to burst up in unison, as if we were ‘shaken from our sleep’. I cannot get enough of this song. It always puts me in a good mood. Recommended for all.


Didn’t fancy what you heard? Keep checking back! I’m going to be covering a large variety of music during my time here on The Harmony, so I’m bound to feature something you’d like. If a song seems unfamiliar or unconventional to you, I suggest giving it a try anyways. You’d be surprised what you can learn to like if you have an open mind!

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