The National has unveiled “New Order T-Shirt,” the second pre-release track from its ninth studio album, First Two Pages of Frankenstein, due April 28, 2023 on 4AD. Accentuating the album’s layered meditations on the rupturing of connection, “New Order T-Shirt” is a warmly hypnotic track that shifts between singer Matt Berninger’s brightly detailed memories of someone he misses and heavy-hearted resolution (“How we wove through the cones walking home / To the place on Atlantic you shared with your hilarious sister / Kicking off your black flats, demolished and laughing / I keep what I can of you”). “To me the line ‘I keep what I can of you’ means something about everyone I’ve ever known or loved,” Aaron Dessner says. “There’s a simplicity to ‘New Order T-Shirt’ that reminds me of our earlier records, but with the full maturity and experience we have now. It feels like a really important song for the future of our band.”
The National have also partnered with New Order on a real, limited-edition New Order T-Shirt that pays homage to the Manchester band’s iconic album designs, with a portion of the proceeds from the collab going to a charity of their choice. The National x New Order shirt is available at https://shop.americanmary.com/.
The 11-song First Two Pages of Frankenstein was produced by The National at Long Pond Studios in upstate New York and features guest appearances by Taylor Swift, Phoebe Bridgers and Sufjan Stevens. Pre-order for the album is available now HERE.
After two back-to-back albums and several busy years of touring, First Two Pages of Frankenstein channels the group’s revitalized chemistry into a body of work that beautifully balances elegant musicality with The National’s more idiosyncratic impulses. Tracks such as “Grease in Your Hair” and “Ice Machines” were road-tested in 2022 before they were recorded, allowing the band to hone the material in real time. “To me the power of this record has to do with the intentionality and structure of the music meeting with a lot of accidental magic,” Aaron Dessner adds.
Photo Courtesy: Josh Goleman