Bon Iver‘s Justin Vernon and the National‘s Aaron Dessner will release their debut collaborative LP, Big Red Machine, on August 31st via Jagjaguwar (on vinyl, CD and cassette), all streaming services and their recently launched digital platform, PEOPLE.
The 10-track album includes four new songs – “Forest Green,” “Lyla,” “Gratitude” and “Hymnostic” – currently streaming at the PEOPLE site. Guest performers include the National drummer Bryan Devendorf, Arcade Fire’s Richard Reed Parry, violinist/string arranger Rob Moose and Sufjan Stevens collaborator James McAlister.
Vernon and Dessner first started collaborating a decade ago, when the Bon Iver songwriter wrote a song based on one of Dessner’s instrumental sketches titled “Big Red Machine” for the Dark Was the Night charity compilation album. The duo developed the Big Red Machine material over the past two years as the foundation for improvised live sets at the Eaux Claires, Haven and Sounds From a Safe Harbor festivals in the summer of 2017, working with different performers each time.
The musicians produced the LP with frequent collaborator Brad Cook, recording primarily at Dessner’s Long Pond studio in Upper Hudson Valley, New York.
“I don’t think the record would exist without the community that came together to make it,” Dessner said in a statement. “We took the music to a certain point, and then we reached out and sent it far and wide, inviting friends to contribute any and all ideas. We’ve viewed the record and the process from a community standpoint. We’re incredibly excited about it, as excited as we would be for any album we might make in another situation that’s more conventional. But this feels like something new – the process felt different and the outcome felt different.”
Big Red Machine Track List
1. “Deep Green”
4. “Air Stryp”
6. “Forest Green”
8. “People Lullaby”
9. “I Won’t Run from It”