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Sarah Blasko gets some perspective on Depth of Field

Molly McLaughlin and Beatrice Smith

Singer-songwriter Sarah Blasko is building on her trademark raw emotion with her sixth album, but this time around she’s doing things a little differently.

“For me, there is more perspective on this record than potentially my other records have had,” she explains. “On this album, I was really interested in looking at the way different people deal with change and deal with difficulty and the differences between men and women in that way.”  

The album, Depth of Field, was born during Sarah’s time as an artist-in-residence at Campbelltown Arts Centre in late 2016. Along with frequent collaborators Donny Benet, Laurence Pike and Dave Hunt, she set up lights, projections and a sound system to replicate the stage experience.

“It was a really beautiful little cocoon, it was the ultimate atmosphere. I wrote with three people I have performed live with a lot, so we were in an environment that we all loved. Its really different to speaking in public, for example, for me. I’m not as comfortable with that, but playing on stage under lights for some reason feels like a comfortable and safe environment.”

After kicking the tour off in Byron Bay and Brisbane last weekend, she is relishing introducing the live tracks off Depth of Field to Australian audiences.

“It feels really amazing to be touring again. I just recently did a European tour solo, and that was really great, but performing these songs with a full band in a sort of wider context just adds to the album, it has a life of its own in a way.”  

As a singer-songwriter, Sarah has blended fictional narratives and personal experience throughout her career, and this album is no exception. 

“Often people have assumed that all the songs are about me, for instance ‘All I Want’ is actually the words of someone else. ‘Explain’ is about change but it’s the perspective of someone in an imaginary town… I think as a writer it is interesting to assume different personas, even if it’s not overt or obvious. Its always going on beneath the surface.” 

The biggest difference, however, is the complex connection with the listener that Sarah has been able to forge with her audiences, both on stage and on the album.

“I think this album feels very honest, it feels very conversational. It’s intimate but it’s also in your face, and that’s really satisfying to feel like I’m doing something I haven’t done before on my sixth album. It really feels like I’m communicating with the audience in a different way than I have before and I’m enjoying the conversation.”

Sarah Blasko will perform at The Playhouse at Canberra Theatre Centre on Wednesday 23 May. More information and tickets via the Canberra Theatre Centre website.

Photography: Kylie Coutts. Images supplied. 

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Molly McLaughlin

Molly McLaughlin was less than thrilled to move to Canberra a couple of years ago to study Arts and Economics at ANU, but she can confirm the city has grown on her since then. Along with writing for HerCanberra, she spends her time reading, eating noodles and planning her next adventure. More about the Author

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Beatrice Smith

Bea loves that her job as HerCanberra’s Online Editor involves eating, drinking and interviewing people - sometimes simultaneously. The master of HerCanberra’s publishing schedule, she’s usually found hunched over a huge calendar muttering to herself about content balance. Otherwise, you’ll find her at the movies or ordering a cheese board. More about the Author