The Decemberists Announce New Album + Offer Free Download

The Decemberists (Portland, OR)

[MP3] The Decemberists – The Rake’s Song (NEW TRACK!!!!)

It’s been over two years since the release of The Decemberists‘ critically acclaimed major label debut The Crane Wife on Capitol Records. With all the restructuring at EMI and Capitol I’m almost shocked that the label has moved things forward to release the band’s follow up The Hazards Of Love which will hit the streets and internets on March 24th. After all this record sounds NOTHING like Katy Perry.

Most of you know that during my days at Capitol I worked The Crane Wife. It was definitely one of those *pinch me* moments. So far what I’ve heard of Hazards is extraordinary. Like The Crane Wife the record is also a concept album and features of 17 tracks of hyper-literate indie rock.

The press release I was sent states that The Hazards of Love “tells the tale of a woman named Margaret who is ravaged by a shape-shifting animal; her lover, William; a forest queen; and a cold-blooded, lascivious rake, who recounts with spine-tingling ease how he came “to be living so easy and free” in the “The Rake’s Song.”

Lavender Diamond‘s Becky Stark and My Brightest Diamond’s Shara Worden lend their vocal chops to the female characters, while My Morning Jacket‘s Jim James, Robyn Hitchcock and the Spinanes‘ Rebecca Gates appear in supporting roles.

The band have also released a free download of “The Rake’s Song” – which you can nab above – as a little tasting of what’s to come.

No word yet if there will be a Guitarmageddon rematch between Steven Colbert and Chris Funk. Might I suggest switching things up and testing your fate in the battle of a lifetime – Glockenspiel-mageddon?

The band plan on touring this spring and in a ballsy move will be playing The Hazards of Love from beginning to end for the first half of their set before launching into a bevy of delightful older tunes.

The Hazards Of Love Track Listing
1. Prelude
2. The Hazards of Love 1 (The Prettiest Whistles Won’t Wrestle the Thistles Undone)
3. A Bower Scene
4. Won’t Want for Love (Margaret in the Taiga)
5. The Hazards of Love 2 (Wager All)
6. The Queen’s Approach
7. Isn’t it a Lovely Night?
8. The Wanting Comes in Waves / Repaid
9. An Interlude
10. The Rake’s Song
11. The Abduction of Margaret
12. The Queen’s Rebuke / The Crossing
13. Annan Water
14. Margaret in Captivity
15. The Hazards of Love 3 (Revenge!)
16. The Wanting Comes in Waves (Reprise)
17. The Hazards of Love 4 (The Drowned)