Interview: Siobhan Wilson – 'I had this epic love fail and a bit of an existential crisis, which led to this burst in creativity'
- Kirstyn Smith
- 30 May 2017
Listen to an exclusive premiere of Siobhan Wilson's new single 'Paris est Blanche'
While it's not true all the best creative endeavours are a result of a bit of life turbulence, there's no denying it helps to ease the creative flow. Siobhan Wilson, a recent addition to the sparkling Song, by Toad roster, had been working on some new songs for a while before being hit by an emotional wave.
'All of a sudden, I had this epic love fail and a bit of an existential crisis, which led to this burst in creativity, a need to reach out and sing about what was happening.'
After a couple of demos with Chris McCrory from Catholic Action, who later become Wilson's producer, and a fair amount of soul baring, the new album – There Are No Saints – was born.
'Most of the songs are one-takes. I really wanted to keep them bare and fragile sounding. At the time I was obsessed with simplicity and being brave enough to show the vulnerabilities. Themes in the album are questioning faith, dealing with depression and epic heart ache.'
Wilson lived in France just after high school and the spirit of Paris is never far from her work. New single, 'Paris est Blanche', is one of two French-language songs on the album. There are shades of lost love behind the song; it was written by Wilson's ex-boyfriend during the time they spend living in France together: just two singer-songwriters, a studio apartment and a cat.
'When we met each other I sold mini Eiffel Towers in a souvenir shop and he parked people's cars. We separated after five years. I haven't seen him since, but put a song that reminded me of him on my album as a way of creating a beautiful memory. It's a dedication to the feeling of being in love. The whole album is really personal and honest.'
Before this album, Wilson released one in France, as well as two EPs ('Glorified Demons comes in a hand-made, hand-written case – I love arts, crafts, and painting') and a single in the UK. There Are No Saints is her first album in the UK, and the first for quite a while. She recently signed to Song, by Toad, 'a nice record label in Edinburgh,' she says. 'They know the bands I listen to and they like a lot of the same music I like. They are really funny and easy to work with.'
As for the future, Wilson is looking forward: 'Album number two and an instrumental EP as well as more collaborations.' If you were still on the fence about her uniqueness and passion for her art, you can get a feel of what she's about in this cover of 'Chop Suey!' by System of a Down. Or take her own word for it: Wilson describes her own sound as 'honest, dark, emotional romantic apocalypse.'
Have a listen to 'Paris est Blanche' now: