The cover of British singer-songwriter James Blunt’s sophomore album, “All the Lost Souls,” features a photo mosaic on which Blunt’s face is constructed from dozens of photos from throughout his life.
“I do the artwork with my friends, so nobody had to sneak around to get (the photos),” Blunt, 33, says with a laugh. But, he adds, it wasn’t his original concept for the cover.
“I didn’t really want my face on the cover at all,” he explains. “I was going for a design with lots of those small pictures which made up a collage of a larger, darker image of a skull. But that was far too frightening, so we switched it to something that was more identifiable as me.
“The (skull) is still an amazing image, though.”
“All the Lost Souls” debuted at No. 7 on the Billboard 200 in September and has been certified gold — not bad, but a pale follow-up to his double-platinum 2004 debut “Back to Bedlam,” which launched the hit “You’re Beautiful.” But Blunt says the triumph for him was in simply making the album rather than its commercial success.
“I felt a great sense of freedom this time around,” he says. “We set out to not impress anybody but ourselves, and to have fun. I’m enjoying the growth as a songwriter and the development we’ve had from the first to the second album.
“And from here, I feel confident I can kind of move in any direction musically for a third album.”
James Blunt and Sara Bareilles perform at 7:30 p.m. Saturday (Feb. 23) at the Michigan Theater, 603 E. Liberty St., Ann Arbor. Tickets are sold out. Call (734) 668-8463 or visit www.michtheater.org.
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