The song, which was co-written with the National‘s Aaron Dessner (who has had an eventful few weeks) is a more pristine version of what was released back then. In addition to Dessner (who produced the tune), his brother Bryce and Bon Iver‘s Justin Vernon feature on the song.
Other personnel on the song include Brad Cook (Hiss Golden Messenger, War on Drugs) on synth, JT Bates (Lizzo, Poliça) on drums, Thomas Bartlett, aka Doveman, (Nico Muhly, Sufjan Stevens) on keys, Clarice Jensen (Bjork, Nick Cave) and Yuki Numata Resnick (Beirut, Blonde Redhead) on violin/viola all perform on the master.
“i turned away from the glorious light/i turned my head and cried/whatever waiting means in this new place/i am waiting for you,” Stipe sings.
The video was directed by Michael Brown.
“I’m super excited to work with Aaron Dessner,” Stipe said of the collaboration in a statement. “And I’m thrilled with how the song and lyrics landed. The title says it all.”
Dessner told Rolling Stone that the song was written last fall and that “when the reality of the COVID-19 pandemic and social-distancing and self-isolation descended, they felt like they were written about this time all along and perhaps the message resonates especially now.”
The official song release comes after sharing a demo of it and Stipe’s performance of it on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.
This is just the latest of the new material that Stipe shared in the past eight months or so.
Check it out below.