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Positive vibes: Lead singer puts Blue October on more upbeat path

Alternative rock outfit Blue October is touring in support of its new album, “Home.” (Courtesy of Nicola Gell)

Alternative rock outfit Blue October is touring in support of its new album, “Home.” (Courtesy of Nicola Gell)

Justin Furstenfeld enjoys making the most of his personal time.

Today, he’s walking around Pittsburgh taking his afternoon four-mile walk before sound check.

“I’m walking by this cupcake shop, and they look amazing,” he says during a recent phone interview. “I’m on a diet, so I have to stay strong and just walk on by.”

Furstenfeld is the lead singer for alternative rock band Blue October.

Over the course of 20 years, the band has released eight albums and remained a mainstay in rock.

The band’s latest album is called “Home.” It was released on April 22 and debuted at No. 1 on the iTunes alternative albums chart.

“Home” is quite a change for Furstenfeld and crew.

Since the band’s last album, “Sway,” Furstenfeld has turned over a new leaf and is living his life in a more positive way.

“The whole album is a positive look at life,” he says. ” ‘Sway’ was a rebirth of an individual. This album is about how good life can be if you just let it.”

Furstenfeld says writing was a lot more challenging because he was writing from a good place.

“If you don’t know how to let life inspire you, then you shouldn’t write,” he says. “I see a lot of artists write about how things used to be. For this album, I didn’t reference any pain from the past.”

Furstenfeld enlisted longtime collaborator Tim Palmer, who co-produced and helped mix the album.

It was recorded from August to November at Orb Studios in Austin, Texas, and Furstenfeld’s home studio, Crazy Making Studio, in San Marcos, Texas.

“Tim was there to keep me from being selfish,” he says. “Every time I was navigating towards writing in the past, he helped me fix the lyrics. It was a great working relationship for us both.”

Furstenfeld says being able to live in the moment and appreciate what life has to offer has been a big turnaround for him.

“Everything is a lot more upbeat,” he says. “It’s all translated into the show. We’re not playing too many slow songs. We’re focusing on the positive, and we have so much to be grateful for.”