Animal Collective – “Ballad Of Reverend War Character” (Silver Jews Cover)

Another musical act has come forward to profess their admiration for the late David Berman by covering his music. Berman, the creative force behind Silver Jews and Purple Mountains, died by suicide earlier this month. Since then a range of musicians including Bill Callahan, First Aid Kit, and Nothing’s Dominic Palermo. Today Animal Collective join that number.

AnCo members Avey Tare and Geologist have teamed up on a version of “Ballad Of Reverend War Character” from Silver Jews’ 1996 sophomore LP The Natural Bridge. In a note accompanying the cover, they explain that on the night they had been planning to see Purple Mountains together, they instead got together to listen to Berman’s music and discuss his impact on their lives. The next day they recorded this cover. They’re selling it on Bandcamp for a price of your choosing, with all proceeds benefitting MusiCares and Music Health Alliance per the request of Berman’s family.

Here’s the note:

A few weeks ago we planned on seeing Purple Mountains together. Instead we spent the night listening to David’s records and talking about how much his music and art meant to us. He was an inspiration for decades. One we wouldn’t be here without. We’ve been playing covers of his music since 1994 when we first picked up guitars together, so it felt like one of the few things we could do to get through the sadness. The next day we worked on this cover of “Ballad of Reverend War Character”. Per the request from David’s family, all of the proceeds will be donated to MusiCares and Music Health Alliance, so pay as much as you want.

And here’s the song: