The Decemberists Have a Bold New Album on the Way, I’ll Be Your Girl

Listen to synth-driven lead single "Severed" now

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The Decemberists Have a Bold New Album on the Way, <i>I&#8217;ll Be Your Girl</i>

The Decemberists are exploring a new sound alongside a new producer on their eighth studio album, I’ll Be Your Girl, due out on March 16 via Capitol Records. The Colin Meloy-led, Portland-based band have detailed their John Congleton-produced new album and shared its first single, the swaggering, synth-driven “Severed.”

If “Severed”—and the band’s I’ll Be Your Girl announcement, which cites influences like Roxy Music and New Order—is any indication, the album will be a somewhat radical departure for The Decemberists. Their new single builds from a dance floor-ready synth and percussion combo, soon adding dark guitar notes. Even Meloy’s familiar singing voice is subtly distorted, lending a swaggering attitude to lines like, “I alone am the answer / I alone will make wrongs right.”

“When you’ve been a band for 17 years, inevitably there are habits you fall into,” says Meloy in a statement. “So our ambition this time was really just to get out of our comfort zone. That’s what prompted working with a different producer and using a different studio. We wanted to free ourselves from old patterns and give ourselves permission to try something different.” Meloy recalled falling into such patterns on the group’s last record, 2015’s acclaimed What a Terrible World, What a Beautiful World.

WIth this freedom to push boundaries came an increased emphasis on collaboration. Speaking specifically to the process of writing and recording “Severed,” Meloy recalls, “That was written as a punk song, but wasn’t really working. [keyboardist] Jenny [Conlee] set this arpeggio throughout it, and it became like an early New Order song. And I had forgotten that when we made the demo, I also started a file to turn it into more of a Depeche Mode song—I actually wanted it to be a synth song all along.”

The Decemberists will embark on the Your Girl / Your Ghost 2018 World Tour in March, with stops at the Chicago Theater (April 10), the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville (April 13 -14), The Anthem in Washington, D.C. (April 21), Red Rocks in Colorado (May 22), Celebrate Brooklyn (June 13), and two hometown shows at Edgefield in Troutdale, Ore. (June 22-23). The band will perform alongside M. Ward and Whitney at select shows. Also included on their 2018 tour slate is the second annual Travelers’ Rest, the band’s own two-day festival, set for Aug. 4-5 at Missoula, Mont.’s Big Sky Brewing Company Amphitheatre. Ticket info is available here.

Listen to “Severed” via Spotify (or your streaming service of choice) and see the details of I’ll Be Your Girl below. Keep scrolling for The Decemberists’ tour dates.

I’ll Be Your Girl Tracklist:
01. Once In My Life
02. Cutting Stone
03. Severed
04. Starwatcher
05. Tripping Along
06. Your Ghost
07. Everything Is Awful
08. Sucker’s Prayer
09. We All Die Young
10. Rusalka, Rusalka / The Wild Rushes
11. I’ll Be Your Girl

I’ll Be Your Girl Album Art:

The Decemberists Ill Be Your Girl Art.jpg

The Decemberists Your Girl / Your Ghost World Tour Dates:

March
22 – Pomona, Calif. @ Fox Theater
23 – Santa Barbara, Calif. @ Arlington Theatre
24 – Tempe, Ariz. @ Innings Festival

April
06 – St. Paul, Minn. @ Palace Theatre
08 – Milwaukee, Wis. @ Riverside Theater
10 – Chicago, Ill. @ Chicago Theatre
13-14 – Nashville, Tenn. @ Ryman Auditorium
15 – Atlanta, Ga. @ Coca-Cola Roxy Theatre
16 – Charleston, S.C. @ North Charleston Performing Arts Center
18 – Charlotte, N.C. @ Charlotte Metro Credit Union Amphitheatre
19 – Durham, N.C. @ Durham Performing Arts Center
20 – Richmond, Va. @ The National
21 – Washington, D.C. @ The Anthem
23 – Geneva, N.Y. @ Smith Opera House
24 – Cleveland, Ohio @ Agora Theatre
25 – St. Louis, Mo. @ Peabody Opera House

May
22 – Morrison, Colo. @ Red Rocks Amphitheatre +
23 – Kansas City, Mo. @ Uptown Theater
25 – Ann Arbor, Mich. @ Hill Auditorium
26 – Lewiston, N.Y. @ Artpark
27 – Boston, Mass. @ Boston Calling Festival
28 – Montreal, Quebec @ MTELUS
30 – Toronto, Ontario @ Sony Centre for the Performing Arts
31 – Pittsburgh, Pa. @ Benedum Center

June
02 – Indianapolis, Ind. @ Murat Theatre at Old National Centre
05 – Louisville, Ky. @ Iroquois Amphitheater
07 – Philadelphia, Pa. @ Mann Center for the Performing Arts ^
08 – New Haven, Conn. @ College Street Music Hall ^
09 – Shelburne, Vt. @ The Green at Shelburne Museum ^
10 – Portland, Maine @ State Theatre ^
13 – Brooklyn, N.Y. @ BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival at Prospect Park Bandshell ^
15 – North Adams, Mass. @ MASS MoCA
21 – Seattle, Wash. @ Paramount Theatre ^
22-23 – Troutdale, Ore. @ Edgefield ^

August
04-05 – Missoula, Mont. @ Travelers’ Rest

(^ – with M. Ward)
(+ – with Whitney)

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