Why is it that when we’re having one of those really good dreams – say, we’re queuing outside a gig to see our favourite bands - we seem to wake up just as we are at the entrance to the venue? It’s a frustration Devon understands all too well with his new guitar pop banger ‘Why Do We Wake Up? (Before The Good Bit)’. Part autobiographical, the track is about his time in a job he hated a few years ago. “It’s about when you’re in an awesome dream, that feeling of being lost in a different world and then your work alarm going off and you always wake up just as it’s getting good.”
In terms of his lockdown experience, Devon says, “It’s not too different from what I’m used to, actually. I’m from the Forest of Dean so I’m quite far out from any cities. I’m used to the isolation in a way.” He describes his sound as being “quite eclectic” and takes inspiration from the music he produces. “If I find a sound I like, I’m like, ‘Oh cool, let’s go with that’”.
‘Why Do We Wake Up? (Before The Good Bit)’ was co-produced by Bad Sounds. “They’re really good friends of mine now. We’re both in the south west of England. We live in close proximity. We’ve written songs together before, songs that aren’t out yet, that might come out. The relationship was already there so when I knew that I needed someone to look over my production, tie it up, make it tighter, I just wanted to go to them…I felt like we had a really good relationship. We were close and I felt like I really needed that when we were making sure that the single was ready to go. I trusted them because they’re so good at what they do.”
Devon talks of ambitions of a “dream” collaborations with Jack Antonoff and also about being influenced by Phoebe Bridgers’ songwriting. Devon says “(Where I’m from) often bleeds into my songs. The isolation, being out in the middle of nowhere.” From feeling, at times, isolated to reaching fans as far as the US on Tik Tok, Devon says the platform has been “incredibly important”. “It’s been the thing that’s boosted me. It’s given smaller artists…it’s levelled out the playing field with them and massive major label artists. At this current moment in time, there’s nothing better than Tik Tok”. He goes on to describe it as “the future”.
Jack Saunder’s (BBC Radio 1) is among Devon’s many fans and his support “means a lot” to Devon. “Abbie McCarthy (BBC Radio 1) played my song before my local BBC Introducing even played it so that whole team, and especially Jack, have been so, so supportive”.
Fans will be pleased to know that there is new music on the horizon. “I’ve got a load of songs ready to go so I’m ready to start building that universe and (seeing) where we’ll go from there”.
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Words: Narzra Ahmed
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