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The deluxe version of ‘Serpentine Prison’ is out digitally on March 12 and physically on May 21, and will include a number of new tracks.
Among them is the emotive ‘Let It Be’, which you can take a listen to below. “This is a new song about an old frenemy. Not Paul McCartney or Westerberg,” Berninger said of the new track.
The expanded ‘Serpentine Prison’ will also include a number of new cover versions, including renditions of Morphine’s ‘In Spite Of Me’, Eddie Floyd’s ‘Big Bird’, Bettye Swan’s ‘Then You Can Tell Me Goodbye’ and The Velvet Underground’s ‘European Son’.
In an interview with NME, Berninger discussed how the album was initially envisaged as a covers record inspired by Willie Nelson’s 1978 collection of pop standards, ‘Stardust’.
“Some songs are un-coverable – but it’s fun to try and step into someone else’s shoes and melodies and that role of channeling yourself and them,” Berninger said. “When you cover a song, even one that you’ve listened to a million times, it’s a whole different thing to perform it and inhabit it.”
‘Serpentine Prison’ was originally released in October last year. In a four-star review, NME said the album “should be filed next to Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds’ ‘The Boatman’s Call’ and Leonard Cohen’s ‘You Want It Darker’ as a lesson in stately, direct and personal songwriting prowess.”