The Band’s Robbie Robertson has a new solo album coming out. Entitled Sinematic, it was inspired in part by his work as a film score composer and his collaboration with Martin Scorsese on the upcoming crime drama The Irishman. Lead single “I Can Hear You Paint Houses” found Robertson teaming up with another legendary songwriter in Van Morrison, and “Let Love Reign” featured vocals from the Once star and Frames singer Glen Hansard. Now Robertson and Hansard are reuniting on “Dead End Kid,” the latest track we’re hearing from the project.
“They said you’ll never be nothing/ You’re just a dead end kid/ Probably end up in prison/ Or maybe down on the skids,” Robertson rasps over a smoky, sinuous groove, Hansard’s voice soaring above his in a ghostly echo. But then the song takes a defiant turn: “I’m gonna play my song/ Out across this lake/ From Scarborough Bluffs/ Over to New York State/ I want to show the world/ Something they ain’t never seen/ I want to take you somewhere/ You ain’t never been.”
Robertson wrote “Dead End Kid” while he was working on the second volume of his autobiography. “When I was growing up in Toronto, I was telling people, ‘One of these days I’m going to make some music and go all over the world,'” he explains in a statement. “Everyone was like, that’s never going to happen. You’re a dead end kid. Because my relatives were First Nation people and Jewish gangsters, it was assumed my dreams were going to explode. I found strength in overcoming that disbelief.”
Listen to “Dead End Kid” below.
Sinematic is out 9/20 via UMe. Pre-order it here.