New Decemberists (Feat. Laura Veirs) Video – “Yankee Bayonet” (Live From Austin City Limits)

Now entering its 33rd season, the Austin City Limits PBS show’s been mandatory viewing for all of us here at Stereogum for years — impeccable curation, legendary performances, an A/V treat always. It’s been a thrill getting to actually attend a couple of tapings over the past two years, too — Sufjan and the Raconteurs in ’06, and a memorable Arcade Fire set just a few months ago (you’ll wanna TiVO that one to keep you warm during the hiatus).

The new season gets off on the good foot with a double bill featuring Explosions In The Sky and the Decemberists, here with fellow Stereofave Ms. Laura Veirs on a harmonious, bespectacled take of The Crane Wife ditty “Yankee Bayonet.”

As mentioned, the premiere is stacked with a performance from Explosions In The Sky and airs this Saturday night 10/13 at a PBS near you (times may vary, check your local listings — always wanted to say that). No need to wait ’til then, though: There’s more to see of both bands’ ACL performances right now, including a fun interview with the Decemberists wherein Colin admits to nerves, discusses the band’s writing process, and addresses Stephen Colbert’s favorite Decemberists description:

As far as the literate rock label goes, it’s better than being illterate rock. Other than that, I don’t know how to explain it, I think it’s just a tag that got applied to us earlier on and that’s fine … people need to put labels to things.

And later Colin fills us in on how “The Crane Wife” trilogy’s been four or five years in the making (but the whole record isn’t based on the book), and the Decemberists’ two biggest influences: “A myriad of bands from the British folk revival … and just Fleetwood Mac.” Dig in at

This season’s episode listing:
10/20 – Femi Kuti
10/27 – Tribute To Bluesman Jimmy Reed
11/03 – Wilco
11/10 – Arcade Fire