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The Decemberists — This Is Why We Fight
Album: The King Is Dead
Avg rating:
6.9

Your rating:
Total ratings: 2024









Released: 2011
Length: 4:22
Plays (last 30 days): 2
Come the war
Come the avarice
Come the war
Come hell

Come attrition
Come the reek of bones
Come attrition
Come hell

And this is why
Why we fight
Why we lie awake
This is why
This is why we fight
And when we die
We will die
With our arms unbound
This is why
This is why we fight
Come hell

Bride of quiet
Bride of all unquiet things
Bride of quiet
Bride of hell

Come the archers
Come the infantry
Come the archers
Of hell

And this is why
Why we fight
Why we lie awake
This is why
This is why we fight
And when we die
We will die
With our arms unbound
This is why
This is why we fight
Come hell
So come to me
Come to me now
Lay your arms around me
This is why
This is why we fight
Come hell
Comments (189)add comment
My curve is getting messed up, handed out three 8's over the last tracks!
This song has become painful to listen to.
For some reason I get stuck focusing on many of the Decemberists' comments about the U.S. and Americans.  I guess that's another reminder to just listen to the music (from musicians). 
 jonahboo wrote:


I just saw them on Tuesday - always a good show -!!!
hurry looks like the maybe taking a hiatus after this tour
 
9 years later, still a very good band, great live show, i mean is it KISS form '77 Live extravaganza? No....but great in a different way
PRESS PLAY LP!
Complete tosh 😡
Antifa Fight Song...Portland Based
 maboleth wrote:
This is why, I rate it two. When I rate, I rate, this is why, I rate it two stars.
This is why, I rate it two. When I rate, I rate, this is why, I rate it two stars.
This is why, I rate it two. When I rate, I rate, this is why, I rate it two stars.

Actually one star. Such annoying song.
 
I disagree completely, but you get my upvote for the actual lol you created...
 maboleth wrote:
This is why, I rate it two. When I rate, I rate, this is why, I rate it two stars.
This is why, I rate it two. When I rate, I rate, this is why, I rate it two stars.
This is why, I rate it two. When I rate, I rate, this is why, I rate it two stars.

Actually one star. Such annoying song.
 
Fair enough -- no good song has ever had repetitive lyrics.

I'm a huge Dylan fan, but I also realize that the tune is generally more important that the lyrics. It either sounds good or it doesn't. I don't feel like your criticism has much merit. It's music, not poetry.
This is why we fight. Kung Pao - man I'm hungry =D
 GeorgeMWoods wrote:
So why the f@#$& do we fight? This song makes no sense.
 
So that when we die, we will die with our arms unbound.  This is why,  this is why we fight.  
Playing this song 3 times a month does not make it any better. Needs a break 
 GeorgeMWoods wrote:
So why the f@#$& do we fight? This song makes no sense.
 
To be free from oppression?  Am I missing something, or is the message here simple to comprehend?
 alezz_ua wrote:
Or as Mel Gibson screamed as William Wallace 
FREEDOM!!!!!!!!!


And when we die
We will die
With our arms unbound
This is why
This is why we fight

 

 Duc1098 wrote:
hmm. A bunch of skinny hipsters from Portland singing about fighting?
 
Yes.  Clearly, they are the ones that missed the irony. 
I seem to enjoy them more than others...painting and this set has been perfect
 junebaby65 wrote:
Mommy make it stop!
 

Boring Hipster Fluff. 
Extremely boring song
I want to like the Decemberists, I really do... 
hmm. A bunch of skinny hipsters from Portland singing about fighting?

GeorgeMWoods wrote:

So why the f@#$& do we fight? This song makes no sense.



alezz_ua wrote:


And when we die
We will die
With our arms unbound
This is why
This is why we fight

 
Duh!  Freedom.
This is why, I rate it two. When I rate, I rate, this is why, I rate it two stars.
This is why, I rate it two. When I rate, I rate, this is why, I rate it two stars.
This is why, I rate it two. When I rate, I rate, this is why, I rate it two stars.

Actually one star. Such annoying song.
 Grayson wrote:
Admittedly, I was a The Decemberists skeptic for many years. Just felt they had too many of those march-y kinda "themes" (of warfare) going on for my tastes. Well, the years of letting them steep have resulted in serious fandom. Their songs season well.
 
I have had the opposite reaction
It’s the music and production that’s good. Forget the lyrics
Why We Fight is a series of seven documentary films commissioned by the United States government during World War II to justify to U.S. soldiers their country's involvement in the war. Later on, they were also shown to the U.S. public to persuade them to support U.S. involvement in the war.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Why_We_Fight
 GeorgeMWoods wrote:
So why the f@#$& do we fight? This song makes no sense.
 


And when we die
We will die
With our arms unbound
This is why
This is why we fight

Admittedly, I was a The Decemberists skeptic for many years. Just felt they had too many of those march-y kinda "themes" (of warfare) going on for my tastes. Well, the years of letting them steep have resulted in serious fandom. Their songs season well.
 aspicer wrote:

Actually great point - the song sounds like it should be clear until you read the lyrics! ...or are we missing something here? Please enlighten me (us) if so!
 

That's the point isn't it? It's not rational.
 GeorgeMWoods wrote:
So why the f@#$& do we fight? This song makes no sense.
 
Actually great point - the song sounds like it should be clear until you read the lyrics! ...or are we missing something here? Please enlighten me (us) if so!
Mommy make it stop!
 teleskialaska wrote:
Lots of angst towards this song.  I don't get the criticism, or rather the angst.  Personally, I like the Decemberists.  But, I am no expert so what do I know. 
 

Exactly.  I saw them last week here in Blighty and they were great.  Bit folky at times for my taste, especially the shanty types, but this track was tops amongst the rest.
 d-don wrote:
I always thought he said, "Kung Pao." We fight over Kung Pao.
 
Oh great.  Now I hear it too.  And so I laugh.   
 d-don wrote:
I always thought he said, "Kung Pao." We fight over Kung Pao.
 
haaaaaaaaaaa, I have always sung along with him on this song and my entire family chimes in Kung Pao!  Hilarious!
 d-don wrote:
I always thought he said, "Kung Pao." We fight over Kung Pao.
  
Yup now I'm hungry for some Kung Pao Chicken again {#Hungry}
I always thought he said, "Kung Pao." We fight over Kung Pao.
So why the f@#$& do we fight? This song makes no sense.
 rezzyrezzy wrote:
People, people, people!!  have none of you ever seen the 'Why We Fight' Propaganda films from the '40s?   Just read the lyrics of this song..it tells you why we fight..and it's not for us, that's for sure.  Some of you here really have worked up a head of steam about all this..it's a song, folks! Enjoy or turn it off!

 
Why all the fuss? Enjoy or turn it off like Rez sez. {#Rolleyes}
Love it!
This is WHINE!
"Oh my ears! Oh my EEEEAARRRS!!!
They have been Vi-o-Laay-Ted
They have been Violated la la la"

 
 lily34 wrote:
we fight because i can't stand this band.

 
Sad Bastard Music...Hello?{#Headache}
we fight because i can't stand this band.
very good song. 
Sometimes you have to fight.  
This is why we fight: Kung Pow.
 rezzyrezzy wrote:
People, people, people!!  have none of you ever seen the 'Why We Fight' Propaganda films from the '40s?   Just read the lyrics of this song..it tells you why we fight..and it's not for us, that's for sure.  Some of you here really have worked up a head of steam about all this..it's a song, folks! Enjoy or turn it off!

 
I've not seen those films, not being someone who spends time watching WWII propaganda films. I've usually assumed that this song celebrates the old adage of "better to die on your feet than live on your knees". Which is an easy thing to say for fighting types fired with fanatical fervour, but often the ones who get the rough end of the pineapple of such glib slogans are civilians. I wonder how many of the hundreds of thousands of non-combatants who've died in Syria and Iraq, to take recent examples, signed up to such slogans. Not very many, I'd guess.

Of course, I could be misinterpreting the whole song, and it might be referring to a specific conflict in a specific time and place, rather than making a general point, in which case I'd be happy to have my ignorance assuaged.
Radio Paradise.....Playin' all the hits all the time !!!!
People, people, people!!  have none of you ever seen the 'Why We Fight' Propaganda films from the '40s?   Just read the lyrics of this song..it tells you why we fight..and it's not for us, that's for sure.  Some of you here really have worked up a head of steam about all this..it's a song, folks! Enjoy or turn it off!
Love this!
 Businessgypsy wrote:
Five minutes and thirty seconds.

 
... good one!!   lol
 JetC615 wrote:
I really don't care for this band. I've tried but I prefer the Pogues.
 
I've honestly no idea why you group the two together.  
 easmann wrote:
 teleskialaska wrote:
Lots of angst towards this song.  I don't get the criticism, or rather the angst.  Personally, I like the Decemberists.  But, I am no expert so what do I know.  

You are an expert in what you do and do not like, though not necessarily why. It's probably easier to explain why we don't like something, especially if there's an obvious irritant. Try explaining why you like something though. I have a hard time with that. And why bother with analysis?

 
Great observation. I don't think it is really possible to say why you like something in a meaningful way.  Take wine...I think it's pointless to try to describe how it tastes...nothing worse than an arrogant wine bore if u ask me
 GeorgeMWoods wrote:
What the hell is this song about?
 Five minutes and thirty seconds.
What the hell is this song about?
Lots of angst towards this song.  I don't get the criticism, or rather the angst.  Personally, I like the Decemberists.  But, I am no expert so what do I know. 
I really don't care for this band. I've tried but I prefer the Pogues.
 lily34 wrote:
this is why we hit PSD.

 

lol
Bit of a grower, this one.
this is why we hit PSD.
 Giselle62 wrote:
this song also reminds me with the jangly guitar of some Natalie Merchant 10000 Maniacs. she could do this justice.

 
On a good day, yes. 
"this is why we whine..."

time to hit PSD
this song also reminds me with the jangly guitar of some Natalie Merchant 10000 Maniacs. she could do this justice.
 JHZ wrote:

You don't listen? So you just sit there reading the comments and checking out what songs are played? That must be boring.

 

Actually when you find me in here is when I do get bored when I am at work. So I suppose you are right.
Funny progress with this song for me.  I started to like it more as I heard it more.  Now it's on the decline.  The more I hear it the less I like it.  "this is why", "this is why", etc. "come hell", "come hell", etc..  Kinda getting tired of the sound.  I'm not speaking of the message just the tune itself.  Maybe it's just me.
 JHZ wrote:

You don't listen? So you just sit there reading the comments and checking out what songs are played? That must be boring.
 
Sid has many good comments.  This is also a place to come to for the forum.
LOVE this song !!!   Keep up the good work Radio Paradise.
Love this - a great anthem
Does anyone else hear this being a good song for Morrissey to cover?
 sirdroseph wrote:


This is why I don't listen to RP. It's all good, ain't subjectivity and free expression great?!{#High-five}
 
You don't listen? So you just sit there reading the comments and checking out what songs are played? That must be boring.
Jeez ..twice in one day...was I a bad boy or something? PSD
Here is another band that it has become cool to dismiss.        But, Bill knows best, I think.  
Love the great breakthrough bands, like Decemberists and Collective Soul.. so daring, different, and cutting edge. hahaha

Love this song and the Decemberists! This is a really great album!
This is why it should be struck off the play list,sucko barfo awful!
kung-pow-pause.
 subdude wrote:
Is it possible to have a rating lower than sucko barfo. If so this song should be in it.
 

I reserve that for Björk. These guys get a higher rating.
 jnesser wrote:

same here.... this is why i don't listen to mainstream radio, to not hear this and the like.
 
This would NEVER get play on any mainstream radio.  
I loathe this song and its lyrical content also the way it is sung.
 subdude wrote:
Is it possible to have a rating lower than sucko barfo. If so this song should be in it.
 
This made me laugh. Tell us all how you REALLY feel.
Is it possible to have a rating lower than sucko barfo. If so this song should be in it.
Lovely. A first listen 8.
 stf9 wrote:
sick of this song.
 
same here.... this is why i don't listen to mainstream radio, to not hear this and the like.
I could easily hear this as a Smiths tune. The phrasing is almost exact. All we need is Johnny Marr and Morrissey wailing...
 number7 wrote:
This is why we listen to Radio Paradise.
This is why we vote for a great song and band.
 

This is why I don't listen to RP. It's all good, ain't subjectivity and free expression great?!{#High-five}
 Chelshite wrote:

Me too. Saw them live at the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill on their last tour. Amazing.

By the way, to any of our colonial cousins in Delaware, the Pavilion takes the name of the local folks who gave their name to your state.  Small world and great music too eh?
 
I'll never say Delaware the same way again.  Now it's De La WARRRR!

 stf9 wrote:
sick of this song.
 
I really like this album, and this song, but I see where you're coming from... I bought the album when it came out (and before it received much airplay here) but haven't listened to it in months because RP plays tracks off it so much!!
yawn....
sick of this song.
Okay, I'll just give it a 9 today.   BTW......I finally watched "Portlandia" and laughed my ass off.   Highly recommended if you haven't seen it..
 hippiechick wrote:
Great album, I love the Decemberists
 

Yep to both!
 hippiechick wrote:
Great album, I love the Decemberists
 
Me too. Saw them live at the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill on their last tour. Amazing.

By the way, to any of our colonial cousins in Delaware, the Pavilion takes the name of the local folks who gave their name to your state.  Small world and great music too eh?
Great album, I love the Decemberists
 socalhol wrote:
If you really want to find out more about Why We Fight — watch the documentary! 

 
I bought that for my wife a couple years ago.  It really is stellar and makes me almost ashamed of my country. 

Hating
There are more than a few who dislike Colin's voice.  I love it actually.  But I love Aimee Mann's also and she gets mixed reviews as well.
 df1489 wrote:
I'm hearing kung pao! We're fighting for chinese food?
 
{#Roflol}

I'm hearing kung pao! We're fighting for chinese food?
(It's still a great song by the way)
From the best album of the year!  Though this isn't my favorite on the album, it still moves me nevertheless.  Meloy is an amazing wordsmith and his lyrics are poetry.
I am back and forth on this.  I want my Crane's Wife back.

 fredriley wrote:
This is an appropriate song given current events in the Middle East, particularly Syria right now. People there have plainly chosen to die free than live oppressed. Reminds me of a good Mark Twain quote:

I am said to be a revolutionist in my sympathies, by birth, by breeding and by principle. I am always on the side of the revolutionists, because there never was a revolution unless there were some oppressive and intolerable conditions against which to revolt.

 
Well said that man...

Colin Meloy's sister, Maile, is a good author. Her short story collection from a few years ago, Both Ways Is The Only Way I Want It, makes for good reading or a good gift for a reader.
 socalhol wrote:
If you really want to find out more about Why We Fight — watch the documentary! 

  Was it the basis for the song? Just wondering.


Would have given it a 9 if it wasn't for the drum banging.
Great music for the wet and cold morning here in Europe!
 number7 wrote:
This is why we listen to Radio Paradise.
This is why we vote for a great song and band.
 
{#High-five}

 oppositelock wrote:
Lot's of negative comments.  I like this.  I will give this song an 8.
 
This is the first song by the Decemberists that I have not given a 1 rating. Gave it a 7. Actually kinda catchy little tune.

But I still don't like the majority of the drivel they play/produce. But I am open minded to new songs, styles, compositions.

This one works for me.

This is why we listen to Radio Paradise.
This is why we vote for a great song and band.


 ERERER wrote:
"This is why" we have a mute button.

 
Amen.

If you really want to find out more about Why We Fight — watch the documentary! 

A great song from the best album of the year. Love it. An 8. (There a 3 or 4 10s on this record.)

One of my favorites. I like the fact that the group produces not only interesting music but also interesting lyrics. Too little of that out there!
Lot's of negative comments.  I like this.  I will give this song an 8.
 ckcotton wrote:

Couldn't agree more.....

same nasally voice... grating.... 
 
I just checked in to write exactly what you said. coincidence?

 neuticle wrote:
These guys get more and more annoying....
 
Couldn't agree more.....

same nasally voice... grating.... 
 kittyharker wrote:
I think it's odd how people seem to either love the Decemberists (like me) or else absolutely loathe them.
 
{#Dancingbanana_2}I'm fully in the love them camp, and I have been addicted to this CD for a while now, as my driving music. I love the literacy of the lyrics. No bubblegum pop lyrics ever from these guys! Also,  I've seen them live twice now, and they are an excellent live band, sounding even better than recorded. 
These guys get more and more annoying....
 drewd wrote:


I personally, am completely overwhelmed with indifference......
 
AMEN to this!


 kittyharker wrote:
I think it's odd how people seem to either love the Decemberists (like me) or else absolutely loathe them.
 

I personally, am completely overwhelmed with indifference......
I technically do not agree, but I did find the creativity in this comment worth commenting on.....  {#Naughty}
 sirdroseph wrote:
This is why.....this is why....this is why I mute mute mute!!!!{#Arghhh}
 


Ugh.
I choose to LOVE them