Dead Man’s Bones is Ryan Gosling’s long-defunct goth band. They released one album, also called Dead Man’s Bones, which featured backup vocals from a children’s choir. It’s a perfect Halloween album, and I now rank “singing spookily about zombies” as one of Ryan Gosling’s many talents, which also include “playing characters that are extremely repressed but inwardly tormented by emotion” and “wearing ¾ length coats well.” Werewolf Heart isn’t really about werewolves so much as stock deathly imagery, but it’s a jam and warrants inclusion.
Guest verses about star-crossed lovers: 1.
Plinking high notes on a piano: yeah.
Cocorosie is an extremely irritating duo of sisters who dress like Amanda Palmer and sound worse (freak folk is not a good genre). Somehow, they made this banger about werewolves, which includes catchy hooks like “I used to have eyes the color of sky / now I can see in the middle of the night” and lyrics like “in a dream I was a werewolf / my soul was filled with crystal light.” There’s something hypnotic about the song, even though the live version is one of the worst things I have ever seen committed to video.
Verses about Hamlet: 1.
8tracks fanmixes I put this song on as a teen on Tumblr: at least 4.
It’s mildly deranging to me that this song is eleven years old but there’s also something very “early Obama era” about it that makes this fact acceptable to me. Shakira’s “She Wolf” is the quintessential 2009 song: a pop anthem of female empowerment that has a David Guetta remix. Lest you think this song is not about werewolves, Shakira actually says “Darling, it is no joke— this is lycanthropy” in the song.
Millions of views on YouTube: 280.
Radio station I first heard it on: Hot 95.7.
“It’s a full moon….on the Sabbath.” This song might be one of the finest things to come out of 30 Rock, one of the last funny sitcoms on TV (RIP). One of the funniest things you can do with a really good bit is extend it past the point of hilarity, which whoever wrote this understood well: “this whole premise is sweaty.”
Years since it came out: also 13.
This is a perfect song. No werewolf song covers the both menacing and ridiculous nature of the werewolf as well as Warren Zevon’s 1978 hit. The image of a werewolf that both walks around “with a Chinese menu in his hand” and “will rip your lungs out, Jim” encapsulates the inherent contradiction of how centuries of terrifying folklore have focused on what is essentially a big feral dog.
The line “I saw a werewolf drinking a piña colada at Trader Vic’s” is so beautiful that it belongs up there with misinterpreted quotes from Lolita for things that people make art of on Etsy.
Dish the werewolf was looking for: beef chow mein.
Times Spotify has placed this at the top of my year-end list: 3.