Bon Iver discusses struggles with anxiety in new interview

“The new album is about getting through some tough times”

Bon Iver‘s Justin Vernon has discussed his struggles with anxiety in a new interview.

The band surprise-released their fourth album ‘i,i’ at midnight, after sharing eight new songs across the day yesterday (August 8).

Vernon went on Annie Mac’s Radio 1 show last night to discuss the album, and his struggles with anxiety that formed the new record.


He revealed a bout of anxiety, the first in his life, forced him to cancel a tour after the release of 2016’s ’22, A Million’ album.

“I’ve never had that before, [I] never quite understood what it could do to people,” he said. “It really got me. I was stunned by it. Usually I have my stuff together.”

“That’s sort of the story [of the record] for me…” he expanded, saying that ‘i,i’ is about getting through some tough times and getting to a point where you can feel vulnerable and grateful. It’s a big clearing, personally and artistically.”

“I think at the beginning, I was comfortable because I didn’t know what was going on exactly,” he continued. Referencing later popularity and famed, he revealed that he “was lost, and [thought] that I would never get my life back or something.”

“At the end of the day, it’s music – that’s all it is. You can relax after a while when you remember that’s the reason people know who you are.”


Talking about the lyrics on ‘i,i’, he said: “We’re not gonna hide behind this curtain this whole time, we’re gonna say something that’s pretty basic – something you can chew on.”

‘i,i’ features the likes of James Blake, Moses Sumney, Francis and the Lights and more, and Justin also spoke about the collaborative process of the new record.

“Their music speaks for themselves,” he said. “They know how to make good music. Every once in a while, you’ve gotta go out and orbit around some other people, but I’m looking forward to going back in with them at some point.”