West Midlands pop-punk quartet You Know The Drill recently announced details of their forthcoming sophomore EP, ‘Selfhood’, which will be released via Scylla Records on June 22.
The band’s vocalist, Benji Yapp, said about it, “‘Selfhood’ is a word which describes the quality that makes up a person and just being aware and proud of who you are, which really resonated with us as we wrote this EP. We tried not let ourselves be limited by the pop-punk label, and write without worrying what people were going to think, which definitely ended up benefiting the record.”
A first taste of the upcoming release was also unveiled recently, in the form of single ‘Snake Eyes’, which premiered on the BBC Radio 1 Rock Show.
Now, the Birmingham four-piece are here to reveal more about the EP, track-by-track…
‘Overcast’ is a song about realising who you are, your downfalls, and owning the mistakes you’ve made in the past. This song started with the jumpy, hyped-up intro which Damo (bass) and Brad (drums) came up with together in Damo’s living room, and we all worked on it from there.
Ever since the song had that faded-in intro, we knew it was going to be track one off the EP, and although we haven’t played it live yet, we know it’s going to be the opener of our set for a long time to come.
It’s definitely the song we’re most excited to play live, because of the pure energy and the back-and-forth vocals, and we’re hoping it’ll go down really well.
This first thing I wrote for ‘Homesick’ was the chorus, and it was one of the rare occasions for me where it came so naturally when writing it, to the point where the lyrics I initially penned down ended up being the final lyrics.
Lyrically, it is one of the most revealing songs that I’ve ever written, which is about my doubts in being able to make it in music and wondering whether it is all just a waste of time, but then it’s disguised in this really fun, bouncy pop-punk song, and that’s what I love about it.
We had a show the day after this song was released as the second single, and we weren’t really expecting anyone to sing along to it just yet, but as soon as we started that intro, there were about six or seven people singing it back at us and getting involved, which was absolutely insane, so if that’s the kind of reaction it’s getting already, then I can’t wait to see how well it goes down elsewhere.
I’m sure that if I looked hard enough, then I could find voice recordings of myself hiding in the toilet at work singing a super rough chorus of ‘Suspect’. ‘Suspect’ is the story of someone who feels their significant other may not be faithful to them and how it is affecting their relationship.
One of my favourite lyrics is taken from this song in the chorus, “We’re separated like the sea between the shores“, which to me, I think, is a really powerful metaphor for feeling distance from someone.
It was this song in particular that made me really desire a summer release for the EP, because it has such an uplifting vibe throughout, despite the contrasting lyrics!
This track also features one of my favourite moments on the EP, which is in the final chorus when it drops into this big, open quarter-time section, which just feels so powerful, and kinda makes you wanna go out and rule the world!
In between writing sessions down in Eastbourne, Luke (guitar/vocals) would head outside and sit on a brick wall with an acoustic guitar, whilst a dog called Maddie would come and keep him company.
Within a couple of days, he had written this super pretty acoustic track which we knew we just had to put on the EP, so we worked on that too and put it on the record.
Lyrically, I see it as a continuation of ‘Overcast’, only this time, an apology is being made, as well as promises to be better and to grow from the past.
This is the only track on the EP which was recorded entirely at Nightcrawl Studio in Eastbourne with our good friend, Rich Dack. We recorded all of the acoustic late on a Saturday night, and it was the most chilled-out environment to record in, we’d be playing PS4 and hanging out with his dog, Amy, between takes. It was just so relaxing, and I think that comes across when you listen to the song.
Luke did have to re-record one line for this though, because we realised a couple of months after recording that he had actually sung “I lost control of all my goats” instead of “I lost control of all my ghosts“, which was really funny because none of us had realised that for ages.
‘Blossom’ was tentatively titled ‘Maddie’, named after the dog I mentioned earlier, for a long time, but we felt it needed a more fitting name, and ‘Blossom’ just seemed to fit perfectly with the lyrical themes and overall sound of the song.
‘Snake Eyes’ was the very first song written for the EP, and it all started with a clean guitar riff just before the verse kicks in, which Luke came to practice with, and it just expanded from there.
In terms of composition, it changed a lot throughout the writing process, to the point where we ended up cutting sections we had already recorded vocals for. We were very lucky to have Joey Fleming of In Her Own Words lend his vocal talents to the outro section of ‘Snake Eyes’.
All the way along, we knew we wanted someone to feature on that section, but we weren’t sure who, although we did toy with the idea of Joey for ages before actually asking him, assuming he just wouldn’t have been interested, so it only goes to show, don’t ask, don’t get!
Continuing of from the themes of realising your mistakes and then owning them and making them right, ‘Snake Eyes’ touches on realising your self worth and allowing yourself to want better out of your relationships.
ON JUNE 23, THE BAND WILL BE PLAYING AN EP RELEASE SHOW AT THE OASIS MARKET IN BIRMINGHAM.
MORE INFO ON YOU KNOW THE DRILL CAN BE FOUND THROUGH THE FOLLOWING SITES: