The Decemberists Death Count

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Listen to “The Rake Song”:

I loved this article in Paste Magazine that analyzes the death count of all 76 songs in The Decemberists’ catalogue of music.  The Decemberists frontman and songwriter, Colin Meloy, has killed upwards of 70 characters of his own creation. That averages out to about 0.92 deaths per track.   They detail the characters causes of death nicely in a spreadsheet, but here’s a summary:

Leading causes of death:

1. Cannibalism (31)
2. Drowned (6), unspecified (6)
3. War, unspecified (6)
4. Shot (5)
5. Childbirth (3), suicide (3)
6. Abandoned (1), beaten (1), beaten then burned (1), consumption (1), hanged (1), killed by ghosty kids (1), mining accident (1), poisoned (1), premature birth (1), stuck in chimney (1)

Deadliest releases:

1. Picaresque (44)
2. The Hazards of Love (8)
3. The Crane Wife (5)
4. Castaways & Cutouts (4)
5. Her Majesty (3)
6. Always the Bridesmaid EP (2), 5 Songs EP (2)
7. The Tain EP (1), Picaresquieties EP (1)

Deadliest songs:

1. “16 Military Wives” (36)
2. “The Rake’s Song” (5)
3. “Leslie Anne Levine” (3)
4. “I Don’t Mind” (2), “We Both Go Down Together” (2), “The Mariner’s Revenge Song” (2), “The Perfect Crime #2” (2), “Days of Elaine” (2), “Hazards of Love 4” (2)

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