“Indie pop gold.” – Q "Compelling classic pop" - The Line Of Best Fit “Emphatic melodies, resplendent musical arrangements and stand-out lyrics.” - DIY “His whimsical yet surreal scuzz pop hymns sitting somewhere between Sebadoh and Blur.” – Clash “This Oxfordshire troubadour is awash with the sounds and textures of early solo Lennon.” – Sunday Times Culture “A tastily evocative blend of Americana together with pop sounds, rough-around the edges garage rock sensibilities, all with a very Lou Reed tone.” – Gigwise
Willie J Healey takes another big step towards the August 7th release of his new album ‘Twin Heavy’ by sharing the new single ‘Fashun’ along with its official video. The track has been premiered by Steve Lamacq at 6 Music. His acclaim has been exploding since signing to Felix White’s YALA! Records in 2018, landing 6 Music A-lists for recent singles ‘Songs For Joanna’ and ‘True Stereo’, Radio 1 support from Jack Saundersand Annie Mac, plus high profile fans such as Jamie T and Orlando Weeks. ‘Fashun’ melds ragged power-pop, slacker indie and rousing, soulful backing vocals with nods to Willie’s favourite artists such as Neil Young and George Harrison. It sets an irresistible tone as the opening track on the album, but curiously was recorded after Willie thought it had been completed. It was recorded during an improvised session with producer / drummer Loren Humphreys (The Last Shadow Puppets, Florence + The Machine, Tame Impala) as they mixed the record. "The session was so exciting,” recalls Willie. “I was having a really good time in New York. One night a bunch of Loren's friends came down to the studio and we just started playing. It was so fun, we didn’t speak about who would play what which made it really wild and I think we got ‘Fashun’ in two takes. I’ll never forget the look in Loren’s eye while behind the kit. A wild man was driving the train and we all loved the ride." The accompanying video finds Willie and a near lookalike playing up the fashion theme by pulling shapes and posing for the camera. It emphasises the contrasts that are at the essence of the artist: sure, the music is serious, but Willie is the antithesis to the cliché of the tortured artist. It was directed by his regular visual collaborator Joe Wheatley. There’s no-one quite like Willie J Healey. The sonic auteur is emerging as his generation’s answer to songwriting icons Joe Jackson, Elvis Costello and Roddy Frame, with a similar flair for matching eloquent, literate and sharp-witted lyrics with a melodic streak that touches upon all of the great decades in pop history. A future cult classic, ‘Twin Heavy’ is the product of Willie J Healey’s almost obsessive creative nature. By day or by night he’ll most likely be found writing, recording or just jamming in his garage studio, and at any given time he’ll have a couple of dozen songs in development. Surprisingly, music is the second all-or-nothing, double-or-quits passion of his life. He’d been equally dedicated to a previous career as an amateur boxing champion, and while that’s long since over, you’d still be foolish to challenge him to a quick couple of rounds for old times’ sake. Between his music and his force of personality – sometimes intense, other times jovial but consistently warm and accommodating – he’s a youthful local eccentric in Carterton, a small town adjacent to an RAF base. That was all the more striking when Loren Humphrey stayed with him as they prepared to work on ‘Twin Heavy’. A pale-skinned, red-headed Englishman and a towering American who looks one of The Eagles placed in a contemporary style mag: not a combination you see in near rural Oxfordshire all that often. Healey and Humphrey headed to Eastbourne, where they recorded ‘Twin Heavy’ and last year’s ‘Hello Good Morning’ EP in just nine days. Recording to tape certainly isn’t too common these days, but as the album proves, it added to its loose, easy-going vibe and is perfectly fitting for Willie’s esoteric nature. ‘Twin Heavy’ is available to pre-order and pre-save here. Formats include a limited edition cassette which is bundled with a new t-shirt which is available exclusively via this pre-order.