“I feel like I’m in sort of a suspended animation.”
So confesses k.d. lang, who explains she’s dwelled in the doldrums of new musicmaking lately.
“But I’m allowing myself to take the time to step back from it.”
For the Alberta crooner, 56, that means stepping into a 25th anniversary tour for 1992 breakout Ingénue, remastered by Nonesuch last year. The original Sire release, with unhurried vox and cabaret-infused flourishes, marked a shift from lang’s steely swingers like 1989’s Absolute Torch & Twang.
“Country to me was an obsession for a bit, but it wasn’t in any sense of the imagination my musical DNA,” relays lang.
At full-tilt butch, lang delivered sapphic ballads (revisit “Constant Craving”) and publicly came out around the time of its release. She recalls, “I had a very supportive retenue at the record company. There were a lot of gay people working with me at that time. [But] it wasn’t all positive. Not everyone thought [coming out] was a good idea.”
Though lang admits no pull toward any particular genre these days, she insists it’s been a treat to revisit her seminal work onstage, performing the album in its entirety. If the upshot from 2016 collaboration case/lang/veirs bears weight, this tour may prove fertile ground.
“I conjured [case/lang/veirs] up, I think, to help me rejuvenate my love for music and the process of making music,” reveals the Grammy winner. “Although it was very, very arduous at the onset because of the songwriting process. You’re taking three very, very strong-focused originals and putting them in a room together and collaborating.
“It was excruciating at times and you had to really check your ego at the door and open yourself up to words, melodies, processes – things that just really went against your own personal grain.
“That, ultimately, was a completely rejuvenating and healthy experience.”– Beth Sullivan