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Van Morrison Announces 28-Song Double Album Latest Record Project

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 28: Van Morrison performs at Bill Wyman's 80th Birthday Gala as part of BluesFest London at Indigo at The O2 Arena on October 28, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images)

After a spate of controversial anti-lockdown songs in 2020, Van Morrison has switched gears, dropping a song about his songs, titled “Latest Record Project,” with the repeating verse “have you got my latest record project?” It’s the first song released and also opens the album double-album titled Latest Record Project, of course.  It arrives May 7 via Exile/BMG.

Musically, the lovely soul melody with female backup singers serves as an “ad” for the 28 news songs on the set, written during the lockdown. Some of the songs have some questionable titles, including “Stop Bitching, Do Something,” “They Own the Media, “Why Are You on Facebook?” and “The Long Con” that seemingly refer to things that have occurred during quarantine.

Last year’s tracks are not on Latest Record Project. The “Brown-Eyed Girl” singer made it clear in his music that he was not a fan of last year’s COVID-19 lockdown, even threatening to sue the Department of Health in Northern Ireland.

Morrison also recruited guitar deity Eric Clapton for “Stand and Deliver” to support his Save Live Music campaign. It features Clapton singing lyrics like “Do you want to be a free man? Do you want to be a slave?” and “Is this a sovereign nation or just a fascist state?”

His first song screed  — “Born to Be Free” – came out in September 2020, and included the lyrics “don’t need the government cramping my style” and says that psychology “isn’t for the benefit of you and me.” Jason Isbell and Amanda Shires mocked Morrison’s stance and shared a cover of “Into the Mystic” one of his great pre-lockdown tracks.

In a statement to Rolling Stone, Morrison said: “I’m getting away from the perceived same songs, same albums all the time. This guy’s done 500 songs, maybe more, so hello? Why do you keep promoting the same 10? I’m trying to get out of the box.”

The album will feature at least one song about life in lockdown, “Dead Beat Saturday Night,” although the tracklist does not include any of the anti-lockdown songs Morrison released last year.

Check out “Latest Record Project” below.

Morrison mainly wrote the songs on Latest Record Project on piano, guitar, or saxophone.

Latest Record Project: Volume 1 is available to preorder on double-CD, deluxe-CD, triple-vinyl, and digital formats. The LP follows Morrison’s 2019 effort, Three Chords and the Truth.

Latest Record Project: Volume 1 tracklist

Disc One

1. “Latest Record Project”
2. “Where Have All the Rebels Gone?”
3. “Psychoanalysts’ Ball”
4. “No Good Deed Goes Unpunished”
5. “Tried to Do the Right Thing”
6. “The Long Con”
7. “Thank God for the Blues”
8. “Big Lie”
9. “A Few Bars Early”
10. “It Hurts Me Too”
11. “Only a Song”
12. “Diabolic Pressure”
13. “Deadbeat Saturday Night”
14. “Blue Funk”

Disc Two
1. “Double Agent”
2. “Double Bind”
3. “Love Should Come With A Warning”
4. “Breaking The Spell”
5. “Up County Down”
6. “Duper’s Delight”
7. “My Time After a While”
8. “He’s Not the Kingpin”
9. “Mistaken Identity”
10. “Stop Bitching, Do Something”
11. “Western Man”
12. “They Own the Media”
13. “Why Are You on Facebook?”
14. “Jealousy”