How Long Do You Think It's Gonna Last? [Opaque Red] [2xLP]
Outside of their main bands, Justin Vernon of Bon Iver and Aaron Dessner of the National share a vast extracurricular network.
Through collaborations, festivals, and charity compilations, they’ve built a musical universe populated with the indie singer-songwriters and mainstream stars who’ve made their way through Vernon’s April Base and Dessner’s Long Pond studios.
Big Red Machine is a project borne of those collaborations, a chance to roam in familiar terrain; its 2018 debut was a natural synthesis of the pair’s electroacoustic comfort zones. Their new record, How Long Do You Think It’s Gonna Last, builds on the presence of alternating voices from the National’s 2019 record I Am Easy to Find, with frequent Dessner cohorts like Taylor Swift and Sharon Van Etten taking the lead. The heads of the project don’t stretch themselves much, but the best moments provide a solid foundation for their guests and, eventually, Dessner himself.