Today, Ben Watt releases “Irene,” the six-minute centerpiece track of his forthcoming album Storm Damage out January 31, 2019 (pre-order). Atmospheric and without drums, it features Watt on finger-picked metal resonator guitar over an insistent synthetic tape loop, and a perfectly-judged guest cameo from Low’s Alan Sparhawk on electric guitar and harmony vocal.
“It is about the power of nostalgia and the artist-audience relationship, which seems to obsess us all at the moment,” says Watt of the the song. “It is also about the simple brutality of social change – how cities move on, scenes die, and how people get caught up in that. I asked Alan to play on the song after we did a show together in Minneapolis in 2016. We have been friends for fifteen years since I remixed a Low song in 2004. I thought his restless, scratchily emotional guitar style would be perfect.”