The epic is the folk rocker’s first original song since 2012 and details the grim and visceral nature of the U.S. president’s death in 1963.
In the second verse, Dylan, 78, sings: “The day they blew out the brains of the king / Thousands were watching; no one saw a thing / It happened so quickly, so quick, by surprise / Right there in front of everyone’s eyes / Greatest magic trick ever under the sun / Perfectly executed, skillfully done / Wolfman, oh wolfman, oh wolfman howl / Rub-a-dub-dub, it’s a murder most foul.”
A statement released in conjunction with the track on Friday revealed that Murder Most Foul is a previously unreleased song that was “recorded a while back.” Dylan did not, however, disclose when, exactly, it was penned.
Greetings to my fans and followers with gratitude for all your support and loyalty across the years.
This is an unreleased song we recorded a while back that you might find interesting.
Stay safe, stay observant and may God be with you.
— Bob Dylan (@bobdylan) March 27, 2020
“Greetings to my fans and followers with gratitude for all your support and loyalty across the years. Stay safe, stay observant and may God be with you,” the Like a Rolling Stone singer wrote, insinuating that Murder Most Foul came as a gift to fans dealing with the coronavirus pandemic.
In the statement, Dylan suggested that fans “might” find the song “interesting” — and he wasn’t kidding.
Of the seemingly endless verses, colourful and “graphic” lyrics like “Then they blew off his head while he was still in the car” and “Shot down like a dog in broad daylight” piqued curiosity in many of the songwriting legend’s fans, while others poked fun at him for releasing such a long song.
Here’s what some other fans had to say about Murder Most Foul:
If you had Bob Dylan releasing a graphic 17-minute track about the Kennedy assassination tonight in the office pool, congratulations you win two trillion dollars.
— southpaw (@nycsouthpaw) March 27, 2020
“If we needed a Bob Dylan song about JFK, then we needed it,” wrote another Twitter user. “I don’t question culture.”
On YouTube, one fan joked, “Knowing Bob, this would be the short version.”
Bob Dylan releasing his first song in eight years and that song being 17 minutes long is probably the most Bob Dylan thing ever.
— It's All Over Now, Benigma Blue (@benigma2017) March 27, 2020
Many fans seemed to enjoy Murder Most Foul.
“Murder Most Foul is the song we need right now,” tweeted one user. “Bob Dylan is my angel.”
Murder Most Foul is now available through all major streaming platforms.
His upcoming June-July tour across the U.S. has been unaffected.
For additional information, updates and tour date listings, you can visit the official Bob Dylan website.
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