Patty Walters and Ben Langford-Biss talk us through one of the early albums of 2017, 'okay.'
1. ‘PRETTY LITTLE DISTANCE’
Patty: “This is a song about coping. It’s about relying on a more convenient and comfortable reality when the world becomes too much.
"While this can be an inviting way of dealing with living, it’s ultimately temporary, a pause button until the turbulence is either resumed or overcome.”
Patty: “I started writing this song during the worst breakdown I’ve ever experienced. I internalised and ignored my feelings, which ate away at me for months.
"Whilst writing this album, I had nowhere left to run, I sobbed, and I finally had no choice but to open up. I told all the important people in my life about how badly I’d been coping for the last year or more. I also felt it was time I paid a visit to a therapist. I wanted this song to be unashamedly personal.”
3. ‘HEY RACHEL’
Patty: “When my sister was maybe 11 or 12 years old, she went through a pretty terrible patch of depression and anxiety. I tried but couldn’t comprehend it, and I was unsympathetic when she needed support most.
"Although she and I have been close in the years that followed, I’d never explicitly apologised until I sent this song to her.”
4. ‘PATCHWORK LOVE’
Patty: “This song is about being with someone who no longer loves you. It was written to be a painful, bittersweet moment for two people who ultimately want the other to be happy.”
5. ‘CURTAINS CLOSE’
Ben: “This song is a tough one for me. At school I was the one kid who had this ideal family, whose parents were still together. When I hit 18 everything started to fall apart – I bailed and moved out to university. My parents split after 20 years of marriage and that was really hard for me, even as an adult.
"I feel I have come out better for it, my faith in love is stronger than ever and I feel I have and will continue to learn from my parents’ mistakes in my own marriage.”
Read all about As It Is' new album 'okay.' and what they went through to make it in Rock Sound this month.
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6. ‘NO WAY OUT’
Patty: “This song deals with the same events and feelings that inspired track two, in that ‘No Way Out’ tackles the emotions and the metaphors, and ‘okay.’ tackles the journey and the chapters.
"I switched off any kind of poetic filter in my head and just poured feelings onto paper as crudely as they came to me. I wanted them to be as raw as possible before we refined them.”
Patty: “We all create and broadcast more ideal versions of ourselves, sometimes to make an impression on others, sometimes to protect ourselves. In this song, I sing from the perspective of my true and flawed self, and Ben sings from the perspective of my alternate, designed self.”
Ben: “Austen is my grandfather’s name. When I left for the studio the last thing I did was visit him in hospital and honestly I didn’t like seeing him in the pain he was in.
"There was this fear inside me that it might have been the last time I saw him. The song is not about him dying (because he is still going strong) but those moments when you really fear the inevitable.”
9. ‘UNTIL I RETURN’
Patty: “This was the final song we wrote for the album. It’s about our significant others that have to worry about us and try to console us whilst we’re perpetually away – touring or recording.”
10. ‘THE COAST IS WHERE HOME IS’
Patty: “We’ve watched Brighton change over the last five years, as the venues, clubs, and pubs we knew disappeared. But it was our friends and our community that made Brighton home.
"We watched and played shows with the same group of friends every week. We’ve lost touch with many of them over the years, but this song is dedicated to them.”
11. ‘STILL REMEMBERING’
Patty: “Around the time the album was half-written, we became terrified that the songs we’d been writing weren’t good enough.
"That fear became the source of crippling writer’s block for me – the fear that we had failed ourselves and our fans was inescapable in my head. I wrote about that fear. The song is the hypothetical and heartbreaking goodbye to our band.”
'okay.' is out this Friday (January 20) via Fearless Records, and As It Is join State Champs and Northbound on tour in March.
09 - SOUTHAMPTON Engine Rooms
10 - BRISTOL Academy
11 - MANCHESTER Ritz
13 - NEWCASTLE Riverside
14 - GLASGOW Garage
16 - LEEDS Beckett Student Union
17 - BIRMINGHAM Institute
18 - LONDON Forum