Bill Ryder-Jones: 'Working with other artists is one of the times when I feel a real sense of pride and get quite energised'
- Sean Greenhorn
- 8 July 2019
Worried that audiences might get fed up with his 'moaning', the Merseyside singer-songwriter tells us that there's a line of positivity that artists should never cross
Bill Ryder-Jones released his fourth album Yawn last November to critical acclaim. A follow-up to 2015's breakthrough success West Kirby County Primary, it continues that album's appeal of darkly confessional lyrics underscored with transcendent alt-rock. A founding member of noughties hit-makers The Coral, Ryder-Jones splintered off to start his solo career in the mid-2000s.
'It was quite daunting,' Ryder-Jones tells us about the process of starting to write Yawn. 'I am always writing, but when it comes to the point where you have actually got to focus on what you are doing, I find that part daunting.' It is understandable, as his music deals with weighty themes and dark lyrical content, a difficult headspace to keep yourself in. In West Kirby County Primary, Ryder-Jones spoke openly about his own past, referencing a brother he lost as a young child.
Yawn is equally divulging, although less direct and more concerned with the ever-changing present, looking outward to shared stories that sit just below the surface. The approach to melody was different, which in turn had an impact on the lyrics' directness. 'I tried to rethink the way I write melodies, and in doing so not be talking at people quite so much. It makes me feel less self-obsessed, despite being more self-obsessed than ever.'