Earlier this month, William Blackaby released Everything’s Delicious; the sophomore EP under his Blackaby moniker.
In a similar fashion to 2020’s What’s on the TV?, this new collection of tracks restyle age-old folk customs through an indie-pop coloured filter. William utilises his history as a drummer to instil a sense bombast into his acoustically-led repertoire of songs, never more prominently than in recent single ‘No Long Grass’, one of several collaborations with singer Rebecka Reinhard.
Blackaby’s songwriting is really brought to the fore, however, as the EP comes to a close. ‘Lee’ retrospectively contextualises the 4 tracks which proceed it and puts the fragility of William’s vocal on the podium that it deserves.
The way in which Everything’s Delicious bridges old folk stylings with modern pop sensibilities is entirely in-keeping with the album’s lyrical themes. Intentionally keeping its poetic aspirations to a minimum, the EP’s primary thread revisits the writer’s childhood from a progressively greater distance as he flirts with adulthood. And – as anybody could tell you – the transition is far from linear.
Congratulations on a great EP, we love the contrast between the optimism in the title and the uncomfortable subject matter within some of the tracks. How did you come to reach the title Everything’s Delicious?
Thank you! Delicious is one of those words that has positive connotations but that I’ve always found a little bit repulsive. Maybe it’s over used at the dinner table. I enjoy saying it with a mouth full of food – it grosses people out. I used the words ‘Everything’s delicious, Daddy’s chewing loud’ in a song once and the words just stuck with me.
We’re really happy to see ‘Sweet Lemonade’ on the EP, Rebecka Reinhard compliments your voice perfectly. How did you two meet? And Does Rebecka lend her voice to many other Blackaby tracks?
I saw Rebecka play a solo gig in London a few years ago and loved her voice. I approached her about playing in my new band and she was keen. We quickly began recording and playing live together. Her voice always fits in so easily. On this EP she’s on ‘Warm and Sweet’, ’Sweet Lemonade’ and ‘No Long Grass’. She is living back in Sweden now but I hope we can sing together again at some point.
‘Lee’ elevates the EP from strong collection of tracks, into a release with a genuine arc, which isn’t easy to do in 5 tracks. Do you anticipate making a full album in the near future? And will you approach the process in a different way to your EPs?
Thanks! I am working on songs for an album at the moment and have started some recording. I would love to include more friends and musicians in the next collection of songs and spend a bit more time gluing all the songs together sonically.
Your vocals have this instantly timeless and unique feeling, with flashes of Neil Young, Clap Your Hands and Say Yeah, maybe even some of Bombay Bicycle Club’s acoustic stuff in the delivery. Do you recall which vocalists influenced you when you were finding your sound?
Thanks very much. Probably all the people you’ve mentioned there! And Ray Davies of course. Anyone with a screechy high voice really.
A few tracks on this EP have been in your repertoire for a while, how did you select which tunes would be more appropriate for your 2020 release What’s On The TV? And what are the key differences between the two EPs?
I recorded the songs for WOTTV? in 2018 so had been playing them for a couple of years before they went out. They were all recorded within a few days of each other in the same room so they fit together nicely. With the second EP I added some piano parts and worked with a couple of different people in a production role which widened the sound a bit.
An easier one to end on: which artists are you most excited to check out once gigs are back in full swing?
I’d love to see Nearly Dan (Steely Dan tribute band). I tried to see them before the pandemic but turned up on the wrong date. D’oh!
Check out Blackaby’s BandCamp to keep up with future releases.