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Hear Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit’s New Song ‘If We Were Vampires’

Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit have released a new song from their upcoming album, The Nashville SoundReaders can press play above to listen to “If We Were Vampires,” a gentle and melancholy tune.

The lyrics of “If We Were Vampires” examine mortality and the value of time in love: “Knowing that this can’t go on forever / Likely one of us will have to spend some time alone,” Isbell sings. “Maybe we’ll get 40 years together / But one day, I’ll be gone …”

A bittersweet song, “If We Were Vampires” showcases Isbell’s fortitude as an acoustic performer and captures the deep questions that a finite life poses to a real love story. The song is made that much sweeter by the gentle harmonies provided by Isbell’s bandmate and wife, Amanda Shires.

“If we were vampires and death were a joke / We’d go out on a sidewalk and smoke / And laugh at all the lovers and their plans,” Isbell and Shires sing in the song’s refrain, telling the story of an enduring love that realizes the brevity of life in a mesmerizing blend of vocals. “I wouldn’t feel the need to hold your hand / Maybe time running out is a gift / I’ll work hard til the end of my shift / And give you every second I can find / And hope is isn’t me who’s left behind.”

“If We Were Vampires” is a switch from both the energetic and driving “Hope the High Road” and the working-class rock of “Cumberland Gap,” both songs from The Nashville Sound that Isbell has already shared. The album is due out on June 16.

In promotion of The Nashville Sound, Isbell and the 400 Unit are hitting the road for an international tour. The group will pay special homage to their album’s home and namesake with a five-night residency at Nashville’s historic Ryman Auditorium in October.

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