Big Red Machine, Fleet Foxes, and Anaïs Mitchell Team Up for New Song, “Pheonix”


Big Red Machine at Primavera Sound 2019. Photo Courtesy of Raph_PH via Flickr.

Big Red Machine, the indie duo consisting of Aaron Dessner and Justin Vernon (Bon Iver), have teamed up with Fleet Foxes and Anaïs Mitchell to share another song from their upcoming album, How Long Do You Think It’s Gonna Last? “Pheonix” is the fourth single from the album. The band previously released “Renegade” featuring Taylor Swift, “Latter Days” featuring Anaïs Mitchell, and “The Ghost of Cincinnati.” Big Red Machine’s sophomore album is set to be released on August 27 and follows the band’s 2018 self-titled debut album. Check out the single below!

“It was a high, high honor to work on this song, and beyond that, it was a really interesting creative challenge,” Fleet Foxes’ Robin Pecknold said in a statement. “Justin’s vocals and the beautiful chorus were already in place before I got my hands on it, so I felt my job melodically and lyrically was to set his entrance up in the best possible way. I felt like a pilgrim putting questions to an elusive sage, not needing clear answers, but happy for the chance to ask.”

““Phoenix” was one of the last songs we wrote for this record,” Aaron Dessner added. “I was thinking about the Band and the Grateful Dead… maybe imagining this Big Red Machine album was some version of the Last Waltz. Justin first heard it while driving, and immediately the chorus melody came into his head. I shared the sketch with Robin Pecknold, who I’ve been a fan of forever and who I’d been dreaming would join us on this record. Robin wrote the verses and pre-chorus as a kind of dialogue with Justin, recalling a conversation they once had backstage in Phoenix. Later, Anaïs wrote words to the chorus and the Westerlies added their magic to the instrumental. JT Bates rumbles around in rare form on the drums on this song. I think it’s what I always imagined Big Red Machine would sound like.”

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