The The’s Matt Johnson debuted his first new single under his band’s moniker in a decade. You can listen to it on Steve Lamacq’s BBC 6 Music show. Johnson phoned in to the program introducing the song “We Can’t Stop What’s Coming,” which was a loving tribute to his late brother Andrew Johnson who passed away in January of 2016. The record will be released as a 7-inch single for Record Store Day in the U.K.
During the interview, Johnson discussed his way of dealing with his brother’s loss through music:
“It’s difficult for me in a way because this is the third time I’ve written a song about a close family member that’s died. I wrote ‘Love is Stronger Than Death’ for my brother Eugene and I wrote ‘Phantom Walls’ for my mum, and now ‘We Can’t Stop What’s Coming’ for Andrew. The wonderful thing about songs is you create almost a living memorial because the songs go out into the world and hopefully become an intimate part of people’s lives, so it helps keep their memories alive.”
In addition to Johnson, returning to the recording lineup on the new single are former The The members, including Zeke Manyika on percussion and James Eller on bass, with The Smiths guitar legend Johnny Marr, who also performed on the records Mind Bomb and Dusk.