In the overture to the release of her new album ‘I Awake’, overall, Sarah Blasko is looking forward to its release on Friday 26th October. As well as the album release, she has appeared at the Mumford & Sons Gentlemen of the Road tour, performed in several of the Mumford & Sons tour shows in both Australia and New Zealand, has been popping in and out of her album installation, and talking and talking and talking a lot about the new album. The AU review managed to grab a few minutes with the songstress during her super busy week prior to the album’s release.
The ‘I Awake’ installation on Oxford Street in Sydney, has given visitors a sneak peak of the album, and it has thus far been giving her some good responses.
“It’s just been really nice to see people, cause we have some listening stations there that you can listen to the whole album on and that was just really sweet, seeing people respond to what they were hearing.” She says.
The album has been receiving some well deserved hype, with the installation giving it a preview, as well as radio station Triple J choosing it as album of the week this week. “I’m very excited, very pleased,” she says when asked about her feelings right now. “I think at this point you’re sort of in no-man’s land, you put this effort into something and it hasn’t quite been released, so you yourself personally haven’t quite experienced that relief or release that you need to just be, to just move on.”
Blasko should be confident in the album’s release, as it is something quite special, and has received positive feedback from almost everywhere! Using an orchestra for accompaniment on these new songs give her music a somewhat different feeling from her previous releases.
“I like there to be a lot of space and I like subtlety in music. I wanted to sort of have those subtleties but then on the other extreme have this orchestra by contrast,” she says on her choice to include the orchestra in the album, which was recorded by the Bulgarian Symphony Orchestra.
“In terms of how it sounds and everything, there’s definitely this sense of having these extremes, of very very simple songs at their core, and then having this huge sort of extreme with these really at times, quite complex, quite overpowering arrangements.” On her website, what she calls the orchestra “an avalanche of sound, soaring and shrieking, simple and striking” and this is exactly how they sound on the recordings.
February 2013 will see the launch of Sarah Blasko’s ‘I Awake’ tour across Australia, accompanied by various orchestras from each city that she performs in. Blasko has never worked with such a large ensemble as an orchestra before, surprising, as the arrangement and writing of songs for the large groups she has recorded with is seamless, “This album is the first time I’ve done that [played with an orchestra]. I’ve worked with string players and woodwind and brass instruments before, but always with quite small groups and I’ve worked with more layering the sound and opening it up with the production side.”
For Blasko, her year away from Australia and move to Brighton in England, really shaped her song-writing for the album. “I think that just having that really solitary experience living alone in Brighton has really formed the kind of mood of the album that experience of having time all for yourself, just to write and to walk and to think and to read.”
Now back and in Australia, it’s full steam ahead for Sarah Blasko and the symphony she has created. Performing again is part of being back, which she says is “like playing new again, it’s good to be playing with the band again and it all feels fresh.”
Fresh and ready to leap into the world’s embrace, Sarah Blasko is ready to feel that relief of letting her album fly out into the world. “It’s just a really special time, and I’ve felt like that every time I’ve put a record out, it’s very exciting, it’s kind of nerve-wrecking and everything, but I feel good about it.”
‘I Awake’ will be available for purchase on Friday 24th October. Sarah Blasko, tours Australia in February 2013, in most major cities.