Jon Foreman is no stranger to the grand and epic statement. In Awaking he declared “I want to wake up kicking and screaming”, while in Faust, Midas and Myself he watered the seeds of eternal curiosity with the words “You’ve one life left to lead”. Now, on Hello Hurricane – Switchfoot’s seventh studio album due for release this autumn – he wants to spend the rest of his life alive.
And there’s not a single person who’s heard the band who has any reason to doubt that he’ll do just that.
Jon Foreman – like the rest of the San Diego’s beloved musical export – wears his heart on his sleeve and lives his life with full passion. The band’s collective love of surfing is no coincidence, and nor is the album’s title. Switchfoot are a band who do not run from the elements: instead they embrace them.
“Hello Hurricane acknowledges the storms that tear through our lives,” states Switchfoot singer and songwriter. “This album is an attempt to respond to those storms with an element of hope, trying to understand what it means to be hopeful in a world that keeps on spinning.”
The result is fresh, which, considering that it’s about a multi-million selling band who have enjoyed a decade of massive crossover success, really is saying something.
Lately the band have been through something of a rebirth. Having become independent once again they built a home studio and flooded the mics with more than eighty songs. The creativity was allowed full flow, and the impact was immense: “For us,” explains Jon, “it was a feeling of true freedom.”
That line about wanting to live the rest of life alive, it comes from the churning, jackknifing track Mess of Me. Needle and Haystack Life gets things going with all the force of a tropical storm, while Always Yours and Your Love is a Song stir the soul and soar like the seagulls high above on the cover.
Yet it’s the title track that best sums up the heart of the album, as the writer explains: “There is a real despair that I see when we travel around the country… and it’s music that people turn to in a time like this. I wanted to reach out to those people with song.”
This type of understatement is typical of the band. And it should serve as the first cries of this new creation: one that embraces, connects and invites people in like never before.