The National Releasing 9-LP, 6 Hour Performance of Same Song as Limited Edition Box Set
The National's fans are in for a treat as the band has announced a new box set highlighting its performance at the Museum of Modern Art in New York from 2013. Notably, the band played for six hours at the event, repeating the same song—"Sorrow"—over and over. And yes. Now you'll be able to buy the entire set as one release. The title? Very humorously...A Lot of Sorrow.
The release will come pressed on nine, clear vinyl records, limited to a run of 1,500 records. The collection will drop on June 22 and will cost hardcore fans of the band (and the song of choice) $150.
The performance caught on record was a collaboration with artist Ragnar Kjartansson, designed to do the following: "By stretching a single pop song into a day-long tour de force the artist continues his explorations into the potential of repetitive performance to produce sculptural presence within sound," read a press release. "As in all of Kjartansson's performances, the idea behind 'A Lot of Sorrow' is devoid of irony, yet full of humour and emotion. It is another quest to find the comic in the tragic and vice versa."
The band certainly did its best to find humor in the situation. The group would release photos of its setlist page from the day, consisting of the word "SORROW" listed dozens of times down multiple sheets of paper. It later joked on Facebook that it came back for an encore...playing "Sorrow" of course.
The song, a non-single from the album High Violet, comes in at 3:25 on the record, and the band managed to get through it 105 times during the session. Some of the versions must have been awfully quick, as a calculator suggests The National would have been able to fit just more than 100 plays in that period. Another interesting side note: Drummer Bryan Devendorf sat out for exactly one rendition of the song.