UPDATE: Decemberists release three new tracks from upcoming EP

Prolific Portland indie-folk unit The Decemberists may be on a long-time-coming hiatus, but they’re giving fans a six unheard new songs with the upcoming EP release “Long Live The King.”

Comprised of 6 songs recorded during the same sessions that spawned this year’s No. 1 full-length record “The King is Dead,” “Long Live the King’s” tracks seem to be cut from the same cloth, and include a cover of The Grateful Dead’s “Row Jimmy.”

So far, two of the EP’s half-dozen songs have premiered online. Like many of the tunes on “Dead,” they have a more overtly country-rock flair that much of their previous work.

“Foregone” is driven by some nice steel guitar playing and reverby rhythm guitar that complement singer Colin Meloy’s earnest vocals. Listen here.

Second, “E. Watson” takes its title and storyline from Peter Matthiessen”s 1990 fictionalized biography, “Killing Mister Watson,” and features some excellent harmonies from guest singer Laura Veirs. Listen here.

UPDATE: Rolling Stone has a third new song, “Burying Davy.”

Earlier this year, Meloy sold his fantasy book “Wildwood” to Laika Animation Studios for a feature version.