Helloooo! Apologies for my absence. This is my first day off in a year and our new album is currently being manufactured. I have been secluded in a music studio for a year recording and mixing the 10th BLACK SWAN LANE album, Blind. After the ninth album, I remember telling a good friend that I can’t top the last one and I’m completely out of ideas after 9 BSL albums, 3 Messenger albums and countless other projects that I have been associated with. And, what is further insane is that our 5th album, The Last Time In Your Light, was intended to be the very end of it all. I guess that I’ve had more to say and share with the Alt Universe. Blind’s release date has been moved up and is scheduled to be released on December 6th, 2022. Pre-sales of the physical album and the official press release will be announced very soon! Hopefully, nuclear armageddon will hold off until then…
There are a lot of unique features and ‘firsts” that occur in Blind. In prior BLACK SWAN LANE records, when you think what you hear is a synthesizer or a keyboard is actually a swirling of ethereal electric guitar sounds; the bsl “sound.” Although the same technique is utilized on this new album, we have incorporated piano, subtle string instruments and even some horns to compliment the live drums, bass, vocals and guitars. Hell, I even sang a backup track in a high falsetto! A year ago, the project started as your typical BSL album and slowly transcended into an eclectic and, at times, a somewhat experimental album. It takes you on a bumpy ride between hard hitting tracks, beautifully crafted ethereal songs and even touches on some 80’s wave without the dreaded drum machines. For the entire process, I make sure not to listen to anything else so there aren’t any outside influences that come near the project. I have also turned down taking part in other projects in order to give the album my full attention. Every night, at bedtime, I listen to the day’s mixes in bed, make notes on what to improve upon and occasionally hear new things to add, or, in some instances, take away. I may try to sell that notebook full of scribbles, musical notes and to-do lists in order to help pay for things.
The words are the hard part. Always have been. It is very difficult to put words to music and make them sound intellectually stimulating. I have a sleu of musical tracks recorded with no words that are collecting dust on several hard drives. And, sometimes, my deep, marlboro voice just won’t go along with some things. Some musicians start with the words. I start with a melody and the music which flows out of me with ease. Some wording on songs came easier than others, especially with what is going on in our world these days. I’ve never much been into political activism or mixing entertainment with controversial topics, but with Blind, I couldn’t hold back my anger and cynicism at the hypocrisy, hatred and lack of moral fiber that is taking place in society. There are still some songs delineating love, existentialism, etc. in addition to my fear of Marjorie Taylor Greene and my lack of understanding of ultra right wing “christians.”
This time around we are also featuring two great photographers on the physical insert. The cover photo, “Truth” is by a nice chap in the Netherlands named René Dissel. The inside photography, “Metamorphosis,” is by Elena Sariñena from Barcelona.
Donn Aaron is back again mastering, Ruskin Yeargain on graphic design and my new “girl friday,” Robyn, have all been invaluable. Thanks also to Alex for listening to hundreds of different takes and mixes! Love to Steve, Fred, Tel, J.K., and too many others to name here. And thanks to my family and neighbors for withstanding the constant banging from the phenomenal Focal studio monitors! Ben, from Sweetwater, talked me into those!
I can’t wait for you all to hear the new one coming this December! I sincerely hope you love it as much as our prior albums. Please click the following link to subscribe to our YouTube channel! youtube.com/@blackswanlane
Love and Light xx
jack richard sobel