We Need Light in The Dark
Lesson Learned Working the Recovery
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"I wanted to make an album that gave people hope; an album that said, the worse things get, the more we need to find the wonder in life. In these difficult times, optimism isn’t naive, it’s imperative to our survival. In doing so, I ended up telling my own story of ongoing recovery from chronic depression/anxiety and PTSD; the lesson I have learned and the ones I am still struggling to learn. By using recycled voices, from old public service announcements and Sci-Fi B-Movies, I found I could hide in plain sight. I found I could talk about subjects far more personal and painful than I could ever with my own voice."
While promoting “All The Little Things”, Tobi began work on what was intended to be a 4-track EP building on the collaboration with Wee Scots Poet [with “All The Little Things” the title track]. The collaboration, however, quickly proved unworkable; the two Artists on opposite trajectories, Wee Scots Poet troubled and frustrated; Tobi determined to project positivity out into the universe.
The experience of “All The Little Things” had been bittersweet for Tobi; while loved by many, a significant number had barely hidden their contempt; and their contempt was aimed squarely at Tobi’s production. As a result, Tobi felt compelled to assert his own artistic voice like never before. And so he returned to the collage-like form of songwriting, he had first tried with his debut single, “All These Things”. Lyrics were pulled together from assorted Vocal Loops, B-Movie Quotes, and Vocoders.
“It’s liberating to express myself through other voices. I can hide in plain sight. The subjects I touch upon in ‘We Need Light in the Dark’ are so personal, so painful, I could never find words for them in my own head.”
Though still intended to be a 4-track EP [now without “All The Little Things”], the title of the EP had been changed to “We Need Light in the Dark”. Tobi wanted to explore the imperative of optimism; the idea that, the worse life gets, the more necessary it is to find the wonder in it. And although, ‘We Need Light in the Dark’ stayed true to this intention, the intuitive nature of piecing together the recycled vocals meant that a far more personal theme crept up on Tobi.
A few months into the production, Tobi realized that he was talking about the lessons he had learned during his own ongoing recovery from chronic depression/anxiety and PTSD, and the lessons he was still struggling to learn. Tobi suffered terrible mood swings throughout the production, as memories and feelings he had buried deep inside himself were dredged up and exposed, raw and ever-painful.
“I was a mess during the making of ‘We Need Light in the Dark’. I wasn’t sleeping much and when I did, it was only a few hours at a time. 9 months into it, and I’d tripled my anti-anxiety dosage just to get through the day.”
Tobi’s previous four singles had all been mixed by the same mix engineer; Tobi considered him an important part of the Tobisonics sound, moreover, he felt ‘We Need Light in the Dark’ was the culmination of the previous two year’s work; so when a series of unavoidable delays meant the mix engineer could not work on the EP, Tobi’s emotions and the project itself were held in an increasingly unbearable state of limbo. Despite his deteriorating mood, Tobi used the delay to address, what he felt was an unfinished picture with the 4-track EP, the lack of darkness to contrast the light. Three new tracks were added to the now 7-track LP [‘Scream’, ‘Snakes’, and ‘All I Ever wanted’], each reflecting Tobi’s own rawer more fractured emotional state.
As weeks stretched into months, and contact with the mix engineer become more sporadic, and Tobi’s attempts to find a replacement mix engineer came to nothing, Tobi reluctantly took on the task of mixing the LP himself. Though an experienced Mastering Engineer, Tobi had hardly mixed anything in three years; racked with self-doubt and fear of failure, Tobi engaged in a daily fight just to keep a clear head.
“I was so scared I was going to screw it up. Luckily, the three-month gap between production and mixing helped me hear the tracks with a fresh perspective”
July 2022, and finishing the mix/master of ‘We Need Light in the Dark’ has left Tobi burned out; but with the year quickly slipping away, and the release schedule already heavily compromised by the delays, Tobi had to set a release date and begin work on promotion and content creation. Not for the first time in the creation of ‘We Need Light in the Dark’, Tobi made a rod for his own back, in deciding to release both the first single, ‘Panic’ and the debut LP itself on the same day; ‘Panic’ would be released across all platforms, and the LP only on Bandcamp as an exclusive early release. This meant twice the work needed to create promotional material and social content, in an already condensed timeframe.
‘Panic’ the first single from Tobi’s debut LP ‘We Need Light in the Dark’ is out Friday 5th August on all platforms with the LP also out the same day via Bandcamp as an exclusive early release. The LP will be out on all platforms Friday 7th October.