Third Eye Blind Inspired After Hiatus

Excerpted from the magazine for

After enduring a four-year wait between recordings, the patience of Third Eye Blind loyalists will be rewarded with a limited-edition DVD that aims to explain what the band has been up to.

The DVD is packaged with the initial pressing of their new CD "Out of the Vein," released May 13 by Elektra. Directed by singer Stephan Jenkins, it offers a slice-of-life view into Third Eye Blind's activities in the studio and on the road.

"Out of the Vein" is the follow-up to the band's 1999 album "Blue," which spawned the single "Never Let You Go," Third Eye Blind's 1997 self-titled debut, spawned the rock-radio staples "Semi-Charmed Life" and "Jumper." Those albums have respectively sold 1.25 million and 3.5 million copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan.

The 14-track album is an emotionally charged rock collection that came to life in a studio the foursome literally built themselves in their hometown of San Francisco. "My dad's a furniture maker, so I know my way around a router," Jenkins says. "We got involved in building the studio because there was a lot of vintage recording gear we wanted to house, a sound we wanted to get out of it."

Cementing the band's do-it-yourself mentality, Jenkins again took on production duties. (He had produced the previous two albums.) This time, he was joined by bassist Arion Salazar at the studio boards.

The studio yielded Third Eye Blind's most prolific recording sessions, spawning enough material for an EP, live album, and an "unplugged" acoustic album, which Venable says will be considered for release once Out of the Vein is established.

"This album is going to be the beginning of a very productive, creative time for us," Jenkins says. "The first two albums were like two parts of the same piece. We've had a hiatus. This is a new beginning. We're developing a songbook that's getting richer."

Prior to the album's release, Third Eye Blind launched a six-week small-market club tour. Jenkins notes that the 1,000-seat rooms allowed the band to "seriously drive home" how important its diehard fans are to keeping the band alive-particularly during a lengthy break between records.

"Every night we literally reach out and grab people, which you don't commonly get to do," he says. "It's a good way to introduce them to the new songs in a close, sweaty way."

Excerpted from the May 17, 2003, issue of Billboard. The full original text of the article is available in the Premium Services section.

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