Black Stone Cherry is set to release its seventh studio album, “The Human Condition,” on Oct. 30, 2020, via Mascot Records/Mascot Label Group. The collection will be available on red transparent vinyl, limited edition CD box set and digitally. Pre-order now at: smarturl.it/BSC-MLG. The music video for the first single, “Again,” can be seen below.
“The Human Condition” was completed mere days before the COVID-19 lockdown was imposed, and as events progressed, it became apparent that the album the Kentucky band was completing featured lyrics that were eerily prescient.
“There was a real urgency and fear of the unknown during those sessions–it was a scary time,” drummer John Fred Young said. “Every song on this album tells a story of the experiences we all go through–our happiness, our struggles, and how we have to adapt.”
The album’s opening lyrics are: “People, people, your attention please, I need to tell you about a new disease” (from “Ringin’ in My Head”). The song was written four years ago but captures the hysteria around the COVID-19 outbreak. On “Push Down & Turn,” the band uses space to achieve crushing swamp-metal dynamics. The track talks about mental health, advocating getting treatment if you’re struggling.
“I suffer from manic depression, and I have severe anxiety,” vocalist/guitarist Chris Robertson said. “I want to convey it’s okay to go to a doctor and talk about these issues. There is no shame or stigma there.”
“The Human Condition” was self-produced and tracked in bassist Jon Lawhon’s recording facility, Monocle Studios. The guys went in with four songs, wrote some new ones and recorded a few beloved, unreleased favorites. For the first time, the band opted to not record basics live and instead meticulously multi-tracked. Each member endured grueling sessions to ensure the collective studio mindset of achieving “epic performances.”
“With this one, we cranked up the amps, the drums are in your face, and there are some really heavy riffs,” guitarist Ben Wells said. “After 19 years and seven albums, we wanted to prove that we still kick ass. This album feels like a rebirth.”
The complete track listing features, “Ringin’ in My Head,” “Again,” “Push Down & Turn,” “When Angels Learn to Fly,” “Live This Way,” “In Love with the Pain,” “The Chain,” “Ride,” “If My Heart Had Wings,” “Don’t Bring Me Down,” “Some Stories,” “The Devil in Your Eyes,” and “Keep on Keepin’ on.”
“When I listen back to this record, I feel all these different emotions,” Lawhon said. “We started when we were teens, and life has taken its course, especially now. Through it all, your heart and your perspectives change, but one thing that hasn’t changed is our connection as friends.”
Robertson said: “This is a brotherhood. It’s been amazing to stick around with all four original members and still be inspired. Here’s to seven more albums and another 19 years!”