Next month The National will be releasing their eighth studio album with I Am Easy To Find. The original announcement came with the lead single and album opener “You Had Your Soul With You,” a brightly colored song bursting with controlled chaos. Today, the band have shared the next single, and (not?) coincidentally album closer “Light Years.” Much like how the previous song seemed to open up a new world, this one represents the flip side of that, closing things out on a more stripped down and somber note.
“Light Years” was one of the songs The National started sliding into setlists throughout their tour of Sleep Well Beast. It may be a sorta odd choice for a single (and especially so given that it’s the last song on the album), but it’s evident that this is something the band are very proud of. Alongside some a shimmering piano piano melody, Matt Berninger sings of trying to connect with a loved one. It’s a beautifully rendered sentiment, where every note and every vocal part just tugs at your emotions.
Speaking about the song, Matt stated:
“I remember there was the chorus, there was a book by Sean by Wilsey called “Oh the Glory of It All” – I stole the whole title of that. It was on the shelf in Carin’s library where she keeps all her books. “Light Years” by James Salter was also on the shelf and somehow the chorus of that just got pieced together from those two titles. The rest of it is all about just feeling distant from somebody on a different orbit – people who love each other but don’t understand each other.”
Along with the digital drop, the band have shared the song with the first official video from this album cycle. It takes footage from the upcoming short film, also titled I Am Easy To Find, which was directed by Mike Mills. It’s currently set to premiere alongside the album release date of May 17. The video itself is a constantly moving, black and white portrait of a character going through various stages in life. Much like “Light Years” as a song, the video also attempts to create a reflective, gorgeously composed story to dig into. It’s the perfect pairing.
Check out the video for “Light Years” down below.
Pre-order I Am Easy To Find right here.