Even if Third Eye Blind had felt any pressure to follow up its multiplatinum debut album, the band was having "too much fun and feeling like we were a complete recording group for the first time," says lead singer/guitarist Stephan Jenkins. The San Francisco band's second album, "Blue," due Nov. 23 on Elektra, represents the members of Third Eye Blind's growth as songwriters and musicians.
Jenkins says of recording the album, "We had these jam sessions that were fun. With the first album, I spent too much time trying to analyze the songs. This was the first album where [drummer] Brad Hargreaves was part of the recording process, so it's the first time we've done an album where we felt like a whole band."
Jenkins, the band's lyricist, also produced "Blue." The rest of the act -- which includes guitarist Kevin Cadogan and bass player Arion Salazar -- also get co-producing credits.
The album's first single, the punk-inflected "Anything," was shipped to rock radio Tuesday.
"I think our audience surprises people," muses Jenkins. "There's a culture of people that have gotten what Third Eye Blind is about beyond the singles. It's a pretty wide audience, but sometimes I wish our audience was more diverse. I grew up on the Sugarhill Gang and Cameo."
He adds, "There's a cottage industry of bands playing 'Semi-Charmed Life.' We haven't made a 'Semi-Charmed Life' song on this album. We're past that. We've made songs that make us jump."
The songs on "Blue" range from "Anything," to the '70s -influenced "Never Let You Go," to the more modern rock-flavored "Walking With The Wounded."
Third Eye Blind's songs are published by EMI Music Publishing (BMI).
As for the booming Internet craze, Jenkins admits he's not an artist who is rushing to interact with fans on the Web. "I've sent, like, one E-mail in my life. I'm impressed with the Web, and it's cool and flattering to see all the Web sites for our band. But I'm not the type to sit in a chat room or anything."
As for his role as the band's producer, Jenkins says, "People might think it's a control-freak situation where I sit around telling the rest of the band what to do, but it's not like that. We all write the music, and Arion, for example, got more involved in the production this year."
Third Eye Blind, which is managed by Eric Godtland Management and booked by Creative Artists Agency, is gearing up for another lengthy tour following the release of "Blue."
Jenkins says of touring, "There are times when you have a headache or you're stuffed up and you feel like 'I don't want to do this,' and hotels can get depressing. But once you walk out onstage, it becomes totally worth it."
He concludes, "I don't write songs based on sales projections. I took the same approach on this album that I've always taken: to write songs that are exciting and authentic."
vinyl (albums) and
concert tickets online.