The ad’s subject line might have looked like just another creepy Craigslist come-on: “Artist seeking ‘Strange Desire’ (Brooklyn).”
“‘Strange Desire‘ is something that came to me a few weeks ago when I was working on the last song i wrote for the Bleachers album,” Antonoff wrote. “The lyric is, ‘Feeling like I never was young I followed a dream and a strange desire.’”
Antonoff said the title of the album, due out on July 15, came to him when he was recording a reference vocal off the top of his head, not realizing until later that the lyric had a much deeper meaning.
“That line speaks to my entire life over the past 14 years of writing and being on tour,” Antonoff explained. “I do feel like I’m constantly mourning a childhood I never had. Mostly because I dealt with a lot of loss in the most formative years of my life. that ties into a lot of the lyrics on the album. Specifically ‘I Wanna Get Better’ – ‘while my friends where getting high and chasing girls down parkway lines I was losing my mind.’ I felt completely freaked out at a moment in life that was supposed to be carefree.”
“I let go of a lot right then and started to follow what I now call a strange desire,” Antonoff continued. “It’s the 2 words that perfectly title what this Bleachers album is as a documentation of my life as I can remember it at this point. Or better put, as I see it from this point.
“It’s been a bizarre and wonderful decade (particularly the past 2 years). A lot of great things have happened but it’s also been strange. This album speaks to all of that. I never kept a diary over the past year of being away and thinking about my life as it has unfolded – instead I wrote this album.”
Strange Desire was written and produced by Antonoff along with co-producer John Hill (M.I.A., Jay Z), with help from Erasure/Depeche Mode legend Vince Clarke and other guests. Antonoff has already scored a hit with the twitchy, brain candy single “I Wanna Get Better,” which was followed this week by the 1980s-style tribal pop new song, “Shadow.”
“So now it’s time to move on from the ‘making the album phase’ and start to make the plans to give it to you,” Antonoff said. “As much as its weird to admit, sharing this album is as important as making it for me.
“I’m able to move on with my life from hearing the stories of what people have been through as well as telling them myself. People hearing my stories makes me feel less alone, hearing others stories does the same… strange desire etc.”