Listen to Matt Berninger’s ‘Serpentine Prison’, the title track from The National frontman’s debut solo album

The Booker T. Jones-produced record is out in October

The National‘s Matt Berninger has shared the title track from his upcoming debut solo album — listen to ‘Serpentine Prison’ below.

The ‘Serpentine Prison’ album, which has been produced by Booker T. Jones, is set to arrive on October 2. Last month, Berninger signed a record deal with Concord Records to release the album on his and Jones’ new imprint Book Records.

Berninger has now released ‘Serpentine Prison’, which has been produced by Booker T. Jones and Sean O’Brien. Explaining that the track was written in December 2018 (“about a week after recording The National’s ‘I Am Easy to Find'”), Berninger said in a statement: “For a long time, I had been writing songs for movies and musicals and other projects where I needed to get inside someone else’s head and convey another person’s feelings.


“I liked doing that, but I was ready to dig back into my own garbage and this was the first thing that came out.”

You can watch the Tom Berninger and Chris Sgroi-directed video for ‘Serpentine Prison’ below.

‘Serpentine Prison’, which is named after “a twisting sewer pipe that drains into the ocean near LAX”, features guest contributions from the likes of Matt Barrick, Andrew Bird, Mike Brewer, Hayden Desser, Scott Devendorf, Gail Ann Dorsey, Teddy Jones, Brent Knopf, Ben Lanz, Walter Martin, Mickey Raphael, Kyle Resnick, Matt Sheehy and Harrison Whitford.

Speaking to NME back in December about the ‘Serpentine Prison’ album, Berninger joked that the record is “not the greatest solo album in the world, but it’s in the top five” before elaborating on its sound.

“I wasn’t trying to do anything with a genre in mind,” he revealed. “With the covers, which you might never hear, I was singing some country songs, some soul songs and different things. I didn’t think about the style of the songs or even trying to avoid sounding like The National or [side-project] El Vy. There’s cross-pollination, but I wasn’t trying to go after anything. I just wanted to find some good songs.


“I just wanted to see if I could do something by myself, so I brought in 20 of the most brilliant musicians and some of the coolest people I know.”

Berninger announced earlier this month that he and his brother Tom are working on a sequel to the acclaimed film Mistaken For Strangers, as well as a TV show.