"These songs are all my children. In fact, they're more juicy than children... " - hmv.com talks to BANKS
We've been waiting a long time for the debut album from BANKS. Almost a year. Universally hailed by everyone as one of the most exciting artists on the planet at the beginning of the year, she's preceded the release of her debut album Goddess with a steady stream of singles, each better than the last.
Her debut is a mix of classy, spacious R'N'B, lovelorn sighs and jagged ballads, each injected with invention, vigour and real lyrical bite. She's currently on a whirlwind press tour, but she found time to answer a few of our questions...
Your debut album Goddess is out next week, are you feeling nervous about putting it out? Or are you just excited to finally release it?
"Of course anything that means a lot to you always comes with a little bit of nerves but I'm mostly just excited. In fact, I'm just excited."
How long did the album take you to make? And where did you record it?
"Since I was born. I recorded it in different studios throughout the world, mostly in London and LA."
What were you listening to during the making of the album?
"When I am in a stage of writing I actually don't listen to much, all my stuff comes from inside my own mind and sometimes when I listen to too many other things it can cloud my vision."
Did you spend a long time in the studio?
"Yes, it's important for me to everything to feel right."
You worked with a number of different writers and producers on the album, like Orlando Higginbottom, Sohn and Lil Silva, what did they bring to the process?
"Their different flavours, their different heartbeats, they're all so different but something in them resonates with me so hard that everything turns out connected and fluid with each other."
How would you describe the album lyrically?
Is it a personal album lyrically? Or do you write from the perspective of anyone else on some songs?
"It's very personal, my lyrics are always personal."
Which lyricists do you most admire?
"I'd say Fiona Apple."
What was the hardest song on the album to record?
"That would have to be 'Someone New'.
What’s the song you’re the most proud of?
"All of them, this question will never be able to be answered - these songs are all my children. In fact, more juicy than children because they're 100% my DNA. Not 50%."
When did you settle on the title of Goddess?
"It's just a theme throughout my music, women are goddesses, men are gods, women are gods, men are goddesses."
The cover is very striking, when did you settle on that image?
"As soon as we took that photo, I knew it was right. That had to be the cover."
You’ve got some big live shows coming up later this year, what can we expect from the live show? Any fireworks?
"Me, me, me, me, nutrition, and me."