Matt Berninger, the critically acclaimed frontman of The National has announced Serpentine Prison, his debut solo album.
The record, which is due out October 2nd, has been produced by renowned Memphis multi-instrumentalist Booker T. Jones of Booker T. & The MG’s fame. Berninger will release his debut project through Book Records, a new imprint formed by Berninger and Jones in conjunction with Concord Records.
In celebration of the upcoming release—the first on the new imprint—Berninger is premiering the video for the Serpentine Prison’s title track today. Directed, shot and edited by Tom Berninger and Chris Sgroi, the video was filmed at Earthstar Creation Center, Venice, CA.
“The song ‘Serpentine Prison’ was written in December 2018, about a week after recording The National’s I Am Easy to Find,” Berninger explains about the new track. “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.”
Berninger continues, “The title is from a twisting sewer pipe that drains into the ocean near LAX. There’s a cage on the pipe to keep people from climbing out to sea. I worked on the song with Sean O’Brien and Harrison Whitford and recorded it about six months later with Booker T. Jones producing. It feels like an epilogue, so I named the record after it and put it last.”
The album features contributions from a wide array of notable artists, including Matt Barrick of The Walkmen, Andrew Bird, Mike Brewer, Hayden Desser, Scott Devendorf and many more.
Stream the first taster, below.