lifeblood: songs: backgrounds: all that we let in


2004-03-25: indigo girls on the record, the gay city news:

"a lot of [our songs'] themes crossed over," saliers said. "politics and social causes are going to emerge, which they did, so we have some thematic similarities. we also have some straight-up love songs. it's not a concept album."

however, a story does unify the album, one illustrated by comic book legend jaime hernandez, whose "love & rockets" comic series features queer characters. ray, a big comics fan, asked hernandez to illustrate the album's cover/interior booklet, and he agreed.

"it's the best packaging we've ever had and a great storyline," saliers said. "we're very proud of it."

saliers described the strange hernandez-drawn story, which involves a woman who plants statues from outer space in the desert, as "a metaphor for the beautiful miracles the universe can provide. if we keep our minds open to it and through hard work, diligence and reflection, it's a profound experience. the cover art is this woman [balancing] on a pipe but to me it is a balance between nature and the destruction of nature. there are a lot of things going on there. very spiritual."

as for the songs, ray's love for reggae, ska, and the clash inspired the bouncy, reggae-spiced "heartache for everyone."

asked about the album's gentle title song, saliers said, "it's very personal but also universal. it talks about the details of life meeting, about planets falling and exploding. it's an anti-war song. and it talks about things that have actually happened in my life with friends. in the end there's the beauty and terror of life, they work hand in hand, but it can be painful at times."

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2004-04: the indigos close-up, girlfriends magazine:

it was the mid-eighties when the indigo girls first arrived on the folk rock scene. the georgia-based singer-songwriters immediately raised the bar with their smart lyrics and grassroots political ethos-and curiosity, too, with their gender-neutral lyrics. in the intervening twenty years, and especially after they came out in the early nineties, the prolific duo have provided the soundtrack for many an awakening. their signature message of patience and hope-alongside the outrage-is all over their latest release, a strong new studio album called all that we let in.

the record is their swan song with sony/epic, and brims with the lyrical sophistication that has kept the smart hooks from their hits alive in our heads all these years. there is new energy here, touches of ska and rock anthem rhythms, a branching out that portends good things to come from the pair whose near future holds solo projects for each and a move to indie labels for the indigo girls. amy ray and emily saliers talked to girlfriends on the eve of their new tour from their home base in georgia.

...

girlfriends: the title track, "all that we let in," takes on heavy topics and still manages to have that balanced, spiritual feel to it.

saliers: that song is a real mix for me. i did it in ballad form because i find what's happening now so tragic and disturbing. i am so agitated by the bush administration and the war on terrorism. along with that i want to remember the beauty and minutiae of life. be grateful for the person knitting the sweater for her loved one.

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2004-04-29: no master plan, the guelph mercury:

"there's more to this album," amy ray says. "for the one we made before this, become you (2002), it was sort of like, 'we're going to do an acoustic record' - we were really intentional about that. then we started to make this one, and it was more like, 'let's not limit this. let's play whatever seems to be appropriate. let's bring the songs to a band and really play as a band and work out the arrangements.'

"i think we just didn't want to make become you again."

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2004-11-09: the unexpected is a constant for indigo girls, the asbury park press:

the indigo's 1999 album "become you" featured moving, dramatic folk music, while 2002's inspired "come on now social" featured passionate rock 'n' roll.

"we do whatever moves us," saliers said while calling from new haven, conn. "we each do our own thing well."

each of the indigo's strengths are showcased on the act's latest release, "all that we let in." ray sounds like she is channeling neil young's crazy horse throughout the dramatic "tether," and saliers' gorgeous "something real" is a bittersweet, smart and sensitive track.

"we each did what we do best," saliers said. "we had a lot of fun as well as creative satisfaction." coming up with set lists isn't easy for the duo, who will perform wednesday at the count basie theater in red bank. they have 10 albums' worth of material.

"it's hard to make everyone happy," saliers said. "obviously, you're going to hear a good bit of the new album when we come to town," saliers said. "we do take a look at each album and try to figure out what we're going to do to make a night's worth of music. it's a challenge but touring is still a great deal of fun. not everything is great but overall it's something that we enjoy a great deal. we have no problem representing all the points of our career."


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