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LISTEN: Death Cab, Son Volt Singers’ Kerouac-Inspired Song


Newlywed Death Cab for Cutie leader Ben Gibbard and Son Volt singer Jay Farrar have interpreted Jack Kerouac’s 1962 novel Big Sur for their new album, One Fast Move or I’m Gone. And like the beatnik tale of alcoholism, depression, and exhausted youth, its first leak, “These Roads Don’t Move,” ends in despair.

Listen to the dramatic track here.

“These roads don’t move, you’re the one that moves,” Gibbard sings on the tune, reflecting on dark memories of years spent looking out of jail and freighter ship windows.

Gibbard and Farrar — whose album will serve as the soundtrack to a new Kerouac documentary of the same name (out Oct. 20) — say they relate deeply to Big Sur, being seasoned musicians with decades of touring behind them. The nomadic Keruoac wrote Big Sur while coming to grips with the fame garnered from his hit book On the Road, as his bohemian lifestyle of drugs and alcohol spiraled out of control.

Like the track? Does it do Kerouac’s book justice? Or is this just filler between Death Cab albums? Tell us what you think in the comment section below.