Laura Jane Grace wasn’t planning on making a solo record this year. In fact, she was planning on making a record with Against Me!, the band she’s fronted for the past 23 years. But clearly, nothing went according to plan this year.
So, Grace got to work. She picked up the phone and called Electrical Audio, the iconic studio in her adopted hometown of Chicago, Illinois, to ask if she could make a record with famed engineer Steve Albini. The goal was to go in and document these songs exactly as she’d been playing them in her home, straight to analog tape. When she hung up the phone, she had four days booked.
The result of the session at Electrical Audio is Stay Alive, a record that doesn’t just embody that title, it serves as the guiding principle behind its creations. But it also put life back into an industry that’s been ravaged by venue closures, cancelled tours, and delayed records.
+ Indie LP is Blue / Black vinyl.
A letter from Laura Jane:
"Hi, my name is Laura Jane Grace. This is my album. This album is about staying alive. Stay alive. Don’t die. Work hard. Fight back. This album is an entirely analog recording. No computers were involved in the making of this album. These recordings were not edited together, these songs are documented performances. This album was written and recorded in Chicago, Illinois. I recorded this album with Steve Albini at Electrical Audio on the two days after the full moon of July 5th, 2020. The album was mixed in another two days time. Steve and I were the only two people in the studio. We both wore face masks and stayed 6 feet apart at all times. I only took my face mask off while singing. Please wear a face mask.
There are songs on this album about haunted swimming pools and burning churches. There are songs about mountains. There are songs about astral seas and dry lakes. There are songs about drinking espressos and eating croissants at the Bora Bora beach club in Marbella, Spain. There are songs about dirty rivers that smell like pee in Glasgow, Scotland. There are songs about Nelson Algren’s Neon Jungle and Simone de Beauvoir's Mandarines. There are songs about petrified polymorphs and blood and thunder and LSD and laying on the grave of the Marchesa Luisa Casati while day dreaming of fabulous parties thrown 100 years ago and how the world has fallen apart before and how it is falling apart now and how if we’re lucky it will fall apart again someday long from now too. There are songs about all of that and more but really this record is about staying alive. Stay alive. Don’t die. Thank you for
listening to my record.
PS: this may technically be my first proper solo record but I can’t even tell anymore
PSS: if at any point you refer to this album as an “acoustic album” my 6 string strumming ghost will haunt 10 generations of your family every night of their lives with bedroom busking from 11PM to 6AM :)".
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