After an extended period of focusing on touring and business matters, Asheville-based soulful rock band The Broadcast overcame a series of delays and released its third studio album, Lost My Sight, on July 10. With restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic still in effect, live dates in support of the record are in doubt, but band leader and frontwoman Caitlin Krisko feels that now is very much the right time to release the album.
Krisko moved to Asheville from her native Manhattan in 2010. Reestablishing her band here, she led the group through the making of its debut studio album, Dodge the Arrow, released in 2013. A decade later, Krisko appears relatively settled in her adopted home. “I feel an incredible sense of ‘I can’t think of anywhere else I’d rather be,’” she says.
Working with Wilco and Tedeschi Trucks Band producer Jim Scott, The Broadcast made its second album, From the Horizon, in 2016. Like its predecessor, that record was self-released. And while The Broadcast maintained a steady and energetic schedule of live dates — including multiple tours of Europe — the group operated outside the traditional machinery of the music industry.
“Up until June 2019, I was managing and booking the band under a pseudonym,” Krisko reveals. That all changed recently — the culmination of a focused effort on the part of Krisko and her bandmates. “Having a management and booking agency this last year has relieved an incredible amount of pressure to deliver on something that I’m not really qualified to deliver on,” she says.
But the transition had another unintended effect: The release of The Broadcast’s third album — already postponed once — would be delayed yet again. And not for the last time.
Recording sessions for Lost My Sight were completed by the end of summer 2018. But Krisko says that as the band worked on postproduction activities, they faced a question: “‘Do we release it [in summer 2019], or do we use this as a calling card for managers and agents?’ That was a really tough call for us, because we really wanted to get the record out.”
She ultimately felt that her own booking skills wouldn’t yield the kind of tour that Lost My Sight deserved, and, in fall 2019, The Broadcast signed on with the agent who schedules dates for The Avett Brothers.
The band also inked a deal with a New York City-based management team, Groundwork Artist Management, which was so impressed with the still-unreleased Lost My Sight that the agency wanted to shop it to record labels. Krisko agreed, but that meant yet another postponement. After meeting with several labels, an agreement with one appeared imminent in early 2020. Then, the coronavirus hit, and the deal was off the table.
As the two-year anniversary of its recording approached, Krisko made the decision to move ahead with a self-release of Lost My Sight. With the pandemic forcing the hard-touring band off the road, she decided, “I don’t want [to wait] another year. Let’s just release this baby — do it digitally and call it a day.”
Produced by Tim Lefebvre (formerly the bassist in Tedeschi Trucks Band) and TTB drummer Tyler “Falcon” Greenwell, Lost My Sight is at once more streamlined and confident than its predecessors. The horn charts that characterized much of From the Horizon are largely absent, and new keyboardist Mike Runyon takes a prominent role. And while Krisko’s powerhouse vocals have long been a trademark of The Broadcast, on the new release she proudly displays greater stylistic range. Recalling previous album sessions, she says, “Everyone’s always been like, ‘Go to a 10!’ So it was really nice to have a producer who says, ‘I want you to be as quiet as you possibly can right now.’” She believes that Lefebvre gave her “the permission to have confidence to be subdued, to really lean into the dynamics.”
Krisko describes the central theme of Lost My Sight as unity. “I have to start looking outside of myself, beyond my own experiences, in order to relate to other people more,” she says. And the new songs build on that realization. “A lot of people use social media and meme culture to express their feelings. I feel really blessed that I have been gifted with the ability to write music. And we made a record that felt real, raw and honest.”