Sunday Night Blues: the phenomena of anxiety, sadness, or despair that hits prior to the start of a new week and toward the end of a weekend. Still, Saturdays always fascinated Jack Antonoff more. “Sunday night blues are for people who love the weekend and are sad it’s over,” says the Bleachers frontman, writer, and producer. “Saturday night blues are for people who can’t find their way in the weekend.”
Serving as a metaphor for all the bigger pictures on Bleachers’ third album, Take the Sadness Out of Saturday Night is a collection of imprinted memories, familial flux, shifting relationships, and mental anguish.
“I was combing through what degree do I have to exist in all of this darkness to feel myself and get these ideas out,” shares Antonoff, who says Saturday nights as a child were rarely what he saw in movies. “You’re looking for the breakthrough. You’re coming from the other side, that feeling that holds you back is that kid that can’t figure it out. That’s how I grew up. I felt that way musically as well. I just wanted to get out and start my life and had this phrase [album title] spinning around in my head for a while now.”
Saturday Night was some time coming, and another turn for the Antonoff, who has kept busy since the band’s Gone Now in 2017, with long time collaborator Taylor Swift, most recently co-writing and co-producing Swift’s 2020 double release of folklore and evermore—Antonoff recently co-produced St. Vincent’s Daddy’s Home and co-wrote and co-produced Lorde’s upcoming Solar Power.
Assembled by Antonoff more than a year ago, the 10 songs of Saturday Night shift from depression to hope and a myriad of in-betweens. Lyrically and sonically, opener “91,” co-written and sung with the author Zadie Smith, is the overture setting the tone of breaking into the next phase of life.
“The simplest way to put is, it’s all the sadness and all the joy that comes with entering another phase,” says Antonoff. “The image I had in my head is knocking at a door that you want to open and the push and pull of trying to get through it with all your baggage… you’re put in the position where you have to leave some of the past and bring some with you.”