Oh Wonder feel more at home than ever before in ‘No One Else Can Wear Your Crown,’ discussing their most expansive, grounded, and personal album yet in Atwood Magazine’s intimate interview.
‘No One Else Can Wear Your Crown’ – Oh Wonder
when people try to get you down,
remember that I’m here for you
no one else can wear your crown
it’s yours; just yours
when all you want to do is hide
i’m sitting there, right by your side
and no one else can steal your light
’cause it’s yours; just yours
I think the first album was about being there for other people, and this one’s about being there for yourself.
No one can better explain Oh Wonder’s music than Oh Wonder: “In life, people are going to try and knock you in whatever way they can… Things are going to go wrong, and you’re not going to get what you want all the time, but through that you have to remember to stay true to yourself.”
Ever since debuting in 2014, the London duo of Josephine Vander Gucht and Anthony West have made and toured the world with music that connects on a deeply human level. Their songs – notable for often featuring both members singing in unison – have covered topics of love and loss, but also self-worth, loneliness, finding purpose, and so on. Oh Wonder’s third album, No One Else Can Wear Your Crown, finds the pair doubling down on their commitment to creating with meaning and depth: The record spreads its light through songs that, as West so eloquently puts it, are “about being there for yourself.”
Released January 7, 2020 via Republic Records, No One Else Can Wear Your Crown arrives on the heels of a self-imposed year at home in London, away from their grueling multi-year tour schedule. Using this time to be with family and friends while returning to regular, everyday life routines, Vander Gucht and West rested and recharged their batteries.
The result is an Oh Wonder that is more passionate, self-aware, and inspired than ever before. “I think we had to have a year at home – year off tour, to really appreciate it,” Vander Gucht muses. “Being away from it, you learn to realize that you can’t take it for granted, and that it is so special that we get to do this for our jobs.”
Some days I don’t think
my mamma thinks I’m good
enough to be a superstar
But one day I will show her
I’m a diamond in the rough,
I’ll be a superstar
‘Cause there’s a crown
Covered in glitter and gold
I’m gonna wear it, whether you like it or not
Yeah, there’s a crown
Covered in glitter and gold
I’m gonna wear it, whether you like it or not
And I’ll be singing
– “Hallelujah,” Oh Wonder
Preceding the album, Oh Wonder released five successive singles: “Hallelujah,” “Better Now,” “Happy,” “I Wish I Never Met You,” and “In and Out of Love.” Oh Wonder previously told Atwood that “Hallelujah” – a visceral, spiritually uplifting track – was the only song they could have ever released to kick off this album. “It summarizes so well what we’ve been processing over the one year break we’ve had from touring,” the band explained in September.
Having now had more months to reflect, Josephine Vander Gucht considers “Hallelujah” the cornerstone to Oh Wonder’s record, as well as the message they’re trying to spread.
“I’ve spent a lot of the last year reflecting on how I got here, and it’s taken quite a number of years to convince myself that I deserve to be here,” she admits. “So then, “Hallelujah” is about learning to embrace yourself. This is not from a place of arrogance at all; finally at 29, I actually quite like myself as a human. I think I’m a good person; I think I’m capable; I think I’m intelligent and strong, and I’m good looking, and all these things – whereas five years ago I’d be like, “Absolutely not! I’m gross and I’m horrible,” and all this stuff. So I guess it comes from a place of learning to love yourself, which is particularly hard to do as a woman.”
Stemming out of this singular message of self-love are songs about connecting with others, feeling comfortable in your own skin, and being true to who you are. For the very first time, Oh Wonder have opened up about their own romantic relationship – a topic speculated about by many a fan, but unconfirmed until very recently. “I think this ties into the whole work and life thing,” West says. “We’ve now accepted that this is actually it, and this is cool, and we should celebrate it. We can let people in, and it’s not going to damage anything.”
Three records in, Oh Wonder are more at home with their music and their corner of the universe than ever before.
Confidence and authenticity flow through every song on their latest album – an expansive, personal work that is at once bigger, yet more intimate and grounded than anything they’ve done before.
Catch up with Oh Wonder in our interview below, and dive into the depths of No One Else Can Wear Your Crown with Atwood Magazine as we explore the emotions and experiences that color this spectacular new album.
It’s the same thing we always write about: Learning about yourself, self-exploration, and then being okay with whatever you discover. I think that’s the main thing: However you feel, it’s okay to feel that.
A CONVERSATION WITH OH WONDER
Atwood Magazine: Hello you two! This is our fifth interview together.
Josephine Vander Gucht: What?! That’s mad.
Anthony West: No way.
Yeah, I checked it out! We've done a couple over email and in-person – we did Boston Calling a few years ago, and I think we’ve met in New York twice now, so this is our third time meeting here!
West: I remember the first time was in a huge boardroom. It was very corporate
Vander: That was like one of our first-ever interviews!
It’s been four years since we met in this exact same building, so it's nice that some things stay the same.
West: Full circle.
At the same time, so much has changed in your lives! You've released two albums, and today, we're talking about the third.
West: Yeah, which seems crazy. Third album!
Before we get to the music though, I'd love to hear how you've got on over the past few years.
West: Yeah [deep breath]. Obviously the band was always accidental. Everything that’s come our way has just been a bonus, whether that’s touring, or being able to make more records, or just everything! Like, being able to get up and play music every day isn’t something we imagined doing for four years.
Vander Gucht: Yeah, and it’s really weird I think. Taking a year away, off from it, and being away from it, you learn to realize that you can’t take it for granted, and that it is so special that we get to do this for our jobs. I think when you’re in that momentum and that cycle of creating and then touring, and then promoting it – and we were in that for four years relentlessly, and we didn’t have any time off! –
West: You feel like a cog.
Vander Gucht: You do! A cog in your own machine. We’re not doing it for anyone else; we’re setting the pace and the demands of us, but you feel sometimes a bit like you’re on autopilot. I don’t know – like, the last few months I’ve somehow woken up and been like, “How the hell do we get to do this for our jobs?!” like, I’m just filled with awe that the world has conspired in our favor.
West: I think we had to have a year off, in that sense; a year at home, at least – a year off tour to really appreciate it.
Vander Gucht: Yeah, so weird, so humbling. So cool.
You told me last time around that you lost focus during your second album. Can you talk a little bit about that?
Vander Gucht: Interesting; I don’t remember saying that, but that’s very true. I guess that we made the first album in quite an intimate way, and then shared it with the world, and then got taken on this amazing journey of people listening to our songs; it happened quite quickly, right? And then I guess we were propelled into this plan to just tour those songs, and then it was like, “Oh, you should probably release some new music as well,” and then we shoehorned basically making an album into six weeks in-between tours. Touring is really weird because you don’t get any headspace, and you don’t get any time for reflection because you’re just always looking to the next day, and the next show, and putting all your energy into that.
West: Yeah, and trying to make music within the place where you haven’t decompress yet. We were kind of trying to decompress, whilst, making music, whilst the pressure of a looming tour was happening. I remember being in the studio – I was mixing the album – and then every 10 minutes I would turn to the laptop, which were on, designing the tour poster, which was coming up the next day. It was insane!
Vander Gucht: Yeah. And so, what do you focus on at that point? Because you don’t focus on yourself.
West: You don’t focus on the music
Vander Gucht: You’re not nourishing yourself, because you don’t have time to do it. You’re not focusing on the music, because that needs every inch of your being. You’re not actually focusing on anything!
West: No, you’re spreading yourself thin.
Vander Gucht: Yep.
West: It was totally different this time around –
Vander Gucht: And we were so burnt out by the end, like I was like angry with myself.
It must be so wild to have made an album over the course of the year. I know that it wasn't one song a month - but you gave yourself time, and there was no pressure; there were no labels, nothing, it was just two people. Nobody even knew who you were. A month and a half, it's no time at all; it's amazing to think of what actually did come out of that time, and how joyous the song “Ultralife” can be. Given that, it feels like this new record is a reaction to the turbulence that you went through on the second one.
West: Yeah, I think so.
Vander Gucht: Yeah, and also quite a recent reaction to the year off that we had after it, more so. It’s not really about the years that we spent away; it’s more about the year we spent at home processing it.
West: I think Ultralife was an album about touring, about being in the midst of it; about the craziness. And then this year, this album is just about what it’s like to just be a person again.
How much of your recent lives would you say went into your new music?
Vander Gucht: Of this album? Like ninety-five percent of it! [laughs] Like, I’m gonna get really emotional; it’s really personal, this record, I think.
West: Yeah, it’s probably the most personal we’ve got.
It feels like it. So, going back to that focus and what we talked about earlier, how do you feel that No One Else Can Wear Your Crown reclaims the focus that we're talking about?
West: I was listening back to a song we released recently, “I Wish I Never Met You.” And after listening to it for thirty seconds, I just got this weird sensation like, “Oh yeah, it sounds like us again!” I don’t know why; I was just like, “Oh, this sounds like the band that we should’ve always been!” It was really weird, and I haven’t had that feeling for ages. It was as if that song had already existed, and like that song was always going to be released. I just felt like, “Oh, this is the band that we were meant to be.”
Vander Gucht: Hmm, that’s cool.
West: It’s a nice feeling.
Vander Gucht: Yeah. Also to add, I’m so proud of the second album that we made; I love all the songs intensely, in case it ever comes across like we don’t. It was just personally for us, that was quite a difficult ride.
I know what you mean. I don't think it shows in the music.
Vander Gucht: No, I would hope it wouldn’t!
West: I think we took a lot of the pressure on our shoulders to be able to make that music.
What a way to wake up
Feeling like I’m overexposed
I guess it’s kind of messed up
That I just wanna keep myself closed
Nothing hurts like being blindsided by love
Nothing hurts thinking I’m not good enough
I wish I never met you
But it’s a little too late
I wish I never met you
But it’s a little too late
You left me with these issues
That I just can’t seem to shake
I wish I never met you, oh
But it’s a little too late
Yeah it’s a little too late
It’s a little too late
– “I Wish I Never Met You,” Oh Wonder
What's exciting is that your music has grown continuously expansive, and this is easily your biggest album yet. And I think it would never have happened without Ultralife.
Vander Gucht: Yes, exactly. And so then, to answer your question, No One Else Can Wear Your Crown, that’s taken from the lyric of the opening song. It’s like the first lyric on the album, which is, “When people try to get you down, remember that I’m here for you. No one else can wear your crown; it’s yours, just yours.”
And I think that, to me, sums up the whole album, and how exactly we’ve been feeling. And this isn’t anything to do with being in a band or making music; it’s just being a human. In life, people are going to try and knock you in whatever way they can – whether that’s a stranger on the street who’s going to make a comment that throws you, or I don’t know… Things are going to go wrong, and you’re not going to get what you want all the time, but through that you have to remember to stay true to yourself.
West: It can be an answer for a lot of things if you just stay true to yourself. You can find a lot of answers to things within yourself.
You could put Oh Wonder’s songs on those motivational posters.
West: [laughing] In the mom’s kitchen?
Vander Gucht: Sick, that’s the goal.
Maybe that's maybe that's the next move?
Vander Gucht: [laughing] It’s just all wooden signs for kitchens.
“Keep Calm and Oh Wonder”
West: Yeah, exactly!
Can we talk about building your own recording studio, because I think that is so cool and I feel like every artist I talk to who creates their own recording studio (fellow Londoners Aquilo come to mind), their music becomes more colorful and exciting! Building your recording city you can change everything. What was that experience like for you?
West: It was cool! It was not stressful! We did it whilst we were on tour. So we designed the whole thing, and then in-between tours we’d come home and check on the progress. There are so many decisions to be made; it was all based around workflow, basically, and just making sure where everything is – like a single plug socket, or where the HDMI goes into the wall, or a mic cable; everything had to be thought out, because if we’re going to be there for a while making loads of records, it’s just go to feel like an extension of our arms, basically. But making the record in there was exceptional; it was amazing!
How did it impact your creativity?
West: It must makes it simple! You can both go in there, switch on two buttons, and everything’s on and we can play whatever instruments we want at all times, four in the morning, whatever!
Vander Gucht: We got a piano when we moved into our new house – we put it in the living room, and there are tie lines between the two, so, like the whole house is a live room basically! So we recorded all the drums, all the strings, everything in the living room – which is sick! But it means that like, the piano is also in the same room where you watch TV, so more often than not we’d be watching a TV show and it’d be bit boring, and we’d switch it off and go, “Let’s just jump on the piano!” like at 11 o’clock at night, and you’d bosh out a song, and then it’s like, “This is sick! Let’s just go record it!” and then you can go record it, and you don’t have to book a studio for five days’ time.
You’re just capturing energy, which is why pretty much all of the vocals on the record are all the demo vocals, like from the minute we wrote them – because we were able to record them properly from the get-go!
West: Yeah, that doesn’t happen a lot. Normally when you do a demo, you don’t have that opportunity to just do the real thing. It’s normally just a phone recording, so we felt very lucky to be able to do that!
That kind of reminds me of The Beatles’ White Album, how their recordings are of them in the middle of their house with one of those little mini four-track recorders.
West: Just capturing moments.
Exactly, and you can do that now because you have it in your own house!
Vander Gucht: Yes, we’re lucky.
But how on earth do you manage to set a clear dividing line and set boundaries between your personal lives and your music lives?
Vander Gucht: You don’t! [laughs]
West: That’s the thing, like you just have to accept that you don’t have to.
Vander Gucht: Now.
West: At the time, maybe when we were starting off with the album, we were like, “Oh, this is weird, we need to make sure that we put different shoes on when we go into the studio so it feels like a separate thing,” but actually we can almost celebrate the fact that that’s a thing.
Vander Gucht: I think you have to; you exhaust yourself trying to separate the two.
West: It’s impossible; I don’t mind that our lives are intertwined with our careers.
Vander Gucht: No. We went to a TED talk last night in New York, and the last speaker was a psychologist talking about rumination and how that can kill your sense of self, like thinking about work in your downtime. He spent years and has done loads of studies working out how to separate work life and your own personal downtime, just because your head just keeps going, right? I was thinking about it this morning, and the tools that he was suggesting last night, to cope with that, are impossible when you’re a creative person working out of the house. I think it’s different when you work at a job and you work from home, but when you’re constantly able to create, you can’t just separate.
West: And you love it as well.
Vander Gucht: Yeah, we’re addicted to work! So I feel, I don’t know – maybe this is really dark, but I feel like now is the time that I’ve been blessed with, to make music and be in a band, and I have the rest of my life to hang out and, I don’t know, have a proper relationship and all that kind of stuff. For now, I don’t think I’m able to balance the two very effectively, so I just won’t! [laughs]
West: I think once you accept that, it’s much more enjoyable. Like, it’s find that I’m in the studio at two in the morning, because actually, this isn’t work. I don’t have to strike a work/life balance, because this is actually real life
Vander Gucht: It’s all life!
The planets aligned and you two struck the zeitgeist; why would you stop if you're going, going, going? Take the moment and run with it.
Vander Gucht: Yes, which may come back to bite us in the ass, but for now I’m absolutely buzzing for it.
So Josie, you don't look at Anthony and think work?
Vander Gucht: Oh, no! I mean I do – some days, I do… No, absolutely not
West: I haven’t thought about it like that, which is good – I never thought it would be like work!
Vander Gucht: No, you’re just the guy I get to do things with, who’s fun…
That’s sweet. So, you previously told me that “Hallelujah” was the only song you could have ever released to kick off this album and because of all that it represents. Can you talk more about the song’s personal significance?
Vander Gucht: It’s weird – there are multiple songs with “crowns” in them, and I guess it has quite a similar sentiment to the title of the album and a lot of the songs on the album… This is personal to me, but I guess I’ve spent a lot of the last year reflecting on how I got here, and it’s taken quite a number of years to convince myself that I deserve to be here. So then, “Hallelujah” is about learning to embrace yourself. This is not from a place of arrogance at all, finally at 29, I actually quite like myself as a human. I think I’m a good person; I think I’m capable; I think I’m intelligent and strong, and I’m good looking, and all these things – whereas five years ago I’d be like, “Absolutely not! I’m gross and I’m horrible,” and all this stuff. So I guess it comes from a place of learning to love yourself, which is particularly doubly hard to do as a woman, because society basically has to tell us all the time to sell us shit… because we need this product, and we need to do this, and we’re too fat and too thin and not curvy enough, and our boobs are too small… I guess guys get it too, but I think we get an onslaught as women, doubly in the music industry where you have to kind of fit some box all of the time. So yeah, I’m just like, fuck it! This is who I am, and if you don’t like it, I kind of agree! Can I say that?
I never really saw “Hallelujah” that way before. I never saw it as something that would mean so much to you individually like that, as you lifting yourself up in that way.
Vander Gucht: Yeah, it’s super empowering
West: We’ve had a few messages of people saying that song’s pulled them into self-acceptance, which is pretty cool.
That’s amazing. I feel like the more that we talked about it, the more I recognize the similarities between your first album and this album. You bring a human element to it, and you focus on things that are human; feeling like you want to understand who you are better.
Vander Gucht: A hundred percent!
And I think I get now where that comes from. So we’ve followed “Hallelujah” with the softer “Better Now” and the poignant “I Wish I'd Never Met You.” That back and forth at the end there feels very fresh, like a new style of songwriting for you two!
West: Oh, when we’re singing separately? Yeah, more of that to come!
Can you talk about the songs and how your songwriting approach has changed over the years, if at all?
West: They’re both responses to things, aren’t they?
Vander Gucht: Mmhm! Well, all of the songs are, which is really weird – they’re all responses to feelings or events.
West: “Better Now” was a more instant response to things that had happened, but then I think “I Wish I Never Met You” was something that you needed to say for a long time, but you just haven’t gotten around to saying it.
Vander Gucht: I think our songwriting has stayed the same, though.
West: I think we’re able to articulate ourselves more, in the moment. If we’re feeling something, we find it easier to take our own feeling and then put into a song. I think before, with the first album, we were looking for other people to be like, “I think I understand what you’re feeling; I’ll try to write about that,” whereas now we’re able to look inwards and be like, “What does this feeling mean? Let’s try to figure out what that means.”
That’s a lot harder.
West: More reactions to things.
That’s interesting! So you already recited the opening line of “Dust,” and I love that line, “When people try to get you down”!
Vander Gucht: It’s my favorite lyric on the album, and my favorite song. I wish we could’ve released it first, but… it’s not a single! All my favorite songs are not the ones we’ve released, which is so cool. I’m so excited!
Do you feel like this record has an overarching theme? You talk about reactions… When you look back at this record, distancing yourselves, if you can… What is this record’s story?
West: I just wonder how it’s gonna make people feel, because I think that’s the overall story – is what it means to someone else. I think we’ve realized we don’t make songs for ourselves anymore.
Vander Gucht: Maybe you don’t; I definitely do!
West: I think once they’re released, they’re not ours; and people can lay claim to them as much as they want and they can find their own meanings. It’s a weird thing: I like to tell people what songs are about and where they come from, but also that doesn’t really matter at all, either.
Vander Gucht: The album definitely has a theme, though. It’s the same thing we always write about: Learning about yourself, self-exploration, and then being okay with whatever you discover. I think that’s the main thing: However you feel, it’s okay to feel that.
West: It’s still comforting. I think the first album was about being there for other people, and this one’s about being there for yourself.
It seems like a lot of this album tackles more complex and nuanced ideas and emotions. Is that a statement you would generally agree with?
Vander Gucht: Yeah, definitely – and quite specific emotions as well! I can pinpoint them; it’s not like, “This is a song about feeling inadequate.” It’s a very specific type of inadequacy, or a specific type of doubt or joy or feeling happy for someone because they’ve moved on; like, it’s all very specific and more complex – therefore yeah, I would agree.
I think we’ve realized we don’t make songs for ourselves anymore.
“In and Out of Love” feels extraordinarily solemn; it's like a love dirge.
Vander Gucht: [laughing] Yeah! It is. That’s one of my favorite songs too.
West: It’s a simple song.
Vander Gucht: So simple.
Sometimes simplicity is bliss. Is it hard to balance that simplicity with the ever-increasing orchestrations that you're making?
West: We were listening to New Music Friday today. There’s a lot of production these days, that’s what I’m starting to notice; people don’t strip it back much anymore. And I think it’s really important to do that now. Not for everyone else, but I think I’m starting to realize that the best songs we make, that connect with people and connect with us, are simple in their statements. It makes you focus on the lyrics. Lyrics are the first and foremost, I think – which I don’t get all the time from what we do.
Still, after all this time. I love the upbeat, RnB feeling of “Drunk on You.” It’s a total opposite of “In and Out of Love.” It feels like a really good representation of your musical growth, and how you've been able to incorporate a lot of different instruments into your music over the years. It's so much more than just yourselves, tracks, and piano and stuff. How did that song come to be?
Vander Gucht: That was a ballad when we wrote it! It’s my favorite chorus; it just sings so well, the context of it. That was a weird song to produce because it just took a total life of its own.
West: I kind of like the thuddiness of it.
Vander Gucht: I find it weirdly aggressive, because I know it as a ballad.
West: It just feels like you’re on a night out with someone; it’s like clubby and dancey. Maybe it went in that direction because it feels flirtatious!
It's so fun, because the fact is that your music can go in both of those directions at the same time, and those tracks can lie almost side-by-side with each other on the album.
West: Yeah, it must just be our voices are there, so we can get away with it! It’s the glue between them all, I think. I’m glad you like that one; that was really fun, making it. Josie’d walk in the studio, like, “What are you doing?!” I was like, “Uhh… I’m trying something!” [laughs]
It seems like you're having a lot more fun in the studio these days.
West: Yeah, I just feel like it’s because we got our own studio, and I can just go in there whenever I want!
So let’s good at the end. “There are so many ways to say I love you, and I wouldn't want to waste them on someone who don't feel it too,” you close with in Nebraska. This song hurts from the inside out.
Vander Gucht: [laughing] It’s so sad!
I love the idea of a person as a home. I think that's really special, and I feel like that's the perfect way to end your album – an encapsulation of romance and turbulence. Can we talk about why you close that song?
West: That song was funny! We got into two weeks where we were like, “Let’s just write some country songs!” We’ve got some serious country songs – like, some of them are like, speedily-picking guitars. And then with this song, we were like, “Alright, let’s start writing a parody country song,” because we were just getting bored. So we started writing.
Vander Gucht: But you were singing it like, “’been to Nebraska…”
West: I had like a whistling voice – and the best thing is, I’ve never been to Nebraska. The second line is, “I’ve been to Rome.” I’ve never been to Rome. We just started singing it as a joke, and then the chorus come out of nowhere, and we were like, “We should take this seriously.”
Vander Gucht: We wrote it in genuinely two minutes. We were like, “This is shit.”
West: This is the worst chorus ever, yeah.
Vander Gucht: And we didn’t know what it was about. Anyway, we send it around, to our label, and they went, “This is a great song, you need to put this on the album!” We were like, no it’s a joke song! It’s a joke country song. Everyone was like, “No, no, it’s really good!” And it’s only now that we’ve made it, not reluctantly, but like, “Is this good? I don’t know.”
And it’s only now we finished it, that this song has such a meaning that we didn’t even know we were in. I think it’s about us, like – it’s really freaking hard to date the person that you’re also in a band with, running a business with… Like you’re on 24/7 as we spoke about working, and you’re also trying to carve out some time for yourself to nourish your relationship like you do with your friends and your family and your partner.
I guess that song is about the turbulence and about the inevitable doubt that comes with being in a relationship with anybody, and like, “Is this right? Is this good for us? Should we quit Oh Wonder and focus on this? Is this most important? Where’s the priority?” Like, where do you invest your love and your energy – because you can’t put it on everything. And I guess the thing… [turns to Anthony] you’re still home. Even if I wanted to leave you, I can’t, because you’re my home. And I think that’s just a really grounding thing that we wanted to close the album out with, because it’s a reminder that no matter what, this is what we have.
Oh, I’m going to cry.
Vander Gucht: Yeah, I know – me too!
We've spoken over the past four or five years and you’ve never once addressed your relationship at all over that time.
Vander Gucht: It’s because I cry! It’s because I get too emotional, like, I knew from the off that if anybody asked about us, I’d just burst into tears because I love you so much. Like, I’m such a loser.
West: Aww, so yeah – that’s our song. We wrote a song for ourselves!
That’s the first time you've actually addressed yourselves.
Vander Gucht: Yeah, probably
How do you manage to keep a straight face?
Vander Gucht: We were in weird robot mode for like four years. It does weigh you down!
West: I think we initially did it because we didn’t want people in the interviews to ask about our relationship. We’re both musicians, we want to talk about music!
Vander Gucht: Like, when do you and your fiancée not get on? What about her annoys you? Why do you want to ask something like that – and people would ask it!!
West: We didn’t want that to be our introduction.
Vander Gucht: Yeah, but like small things like when you’re on tour, and like you can’t hold hands around the venue because we’re just so worried a fan would see us, and be like, “Oh my god they’re like –,” I don’t know. I don’t know why…
West: I just don’t think we wanted to let people in
Vander Gucht: Right, you want to keep something for yourself.
West: I think this ties into the whole work and life thing we were talking about, with the studio. I think we’ve now accepted that this is actually it, and this is cool, and we should celebrate it. We can let people in, and it’s not going to damage anything.
I get it – I mean, I think it's so crazy. One of the things I wanted to close with was talking about tour. Are you excited to get back on the road? Is it scary? Are you gonna hold hands this time?
West: Yeah, we’ll sing love songs to each other. We’re really excited, because we haven’t been touring! The only answer for how to enjoy tour is to stop touring, and get back into it. I think you can only love something if you can appreciate what it really is. You can only really appreciate what touring is when you get home and watch YouTube videos. So yeah, tour is going to be a big one. It’s going to be like 18 months long – sick.
You spent this past year, after writing a record about not being able to be home, and not being able to be there for weddings, birthdays, marriages, deaths, at home! I know that had a big impact on you, that you realize you weren't around. And then, you were back around for that year. How do you plan to balance?
Vander-Gucht: That’s the one reason I don’t want to go on tour, because I haven’t worked out the art of balancing yet. And I’ve loved being home and being around for these things, because we’ve written songs about things that have happened that mean something, and that’s the point of life, right? So I don’t have the answer for that one, but I’m gonna work on it real hard in the next six months before we go on tour, to work out how you do that.
West: There’ll be a way to incorporate life into tour, because that’s really important –
Vander-Gucht: You just have to.
West: You’ve got to be a human once you’re on tour, otherwise you become a robot. We both know that.
Who are you listening to nowadays musically?
Vander-Gucht: Dizzy are sick; we’re obsessed with them! We’re taking them on tour.
West: They’re coming around Europe with us, which is sick – they’re one of my favorite bands at the moment; we love them! Who else is there…?
Vander-Gucht: I’m very excited about the new Coldplay album. I’m just buzzing for that. I also heard a really cool song earlier by a girl called Griff.
West: Gracey is really cool, as well.
Vander-Gucht: Gracey is wicked! She’s got a few songs out, they’re beautiful – really cool!
I’ve loved being home and being around for these things, because we’ve written songs about things that have happened that mean something, and that’s the point of life, right?
‘No One Else Can Wear Your Crown’ – Oh Wonder
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📸 © Olga De La Iglesia
:: Stream Oh Wonder ::
Humble, Honest, and Human with Oh Wonder:: INTERVIEW ::
:: Wear Your Crown Tour ::
3/3 – SWG3 (Galvanisers) – Glasgow
3/4 – Albert Hall –Manchester
3/6 – Academy –Bristol*
3/7 – O2 Institute – Birmingham
3/9 – O2 Shepherds Bush Empire – London*
3/11 – Ancienne Belgique – Brussels
3/12 – Alhambra – Paris
3/13 – Paradiso – Amsterdam*
3/15 – Live Music Hall – Cologne
3/16 – Docks – Hamburg
3/17 – Astra Kulturhaus – Berlin
3/30 – Buckhead Theatre – Atlanta, GA
3/31 – The Orange Peel – Asheville, NC
4/1 – The Fillmore Charlotte – Charlotte, NC
4/3 – The Fillmore Silver Spring – Silver Spring, MD
4/4 – College Street Music Hall – New Haven, CT
4/5 – Franklin Music Hall – Philadelphia, PA
4/7 – Kings Theatre – Brooklyn, NY
4/8 – House of Blues – Boston, MA
4/10 – MTELUS – Montreal, QC
4/11 – Queen Elizabeth Theatre – Toronto, ON
4/13 – Majestic Theatre – Detroit, MI
4/14 – The Vic Theatre – Chicago, IL
4/15 – First Avenue – Minneapolis, MN
4/17 – The Mission Ballroom – Denver, CO
4/18 – The Depot – Salt Lake City, UT
4/20 – Roseland Theater – Portland, OR
4/21 – Showbox SoDo – Seattle, WA
4/22 – Orpheum Theatre – Vancouver, BC
4/24 – Fox Theater – Oakland, CA
4/25 – House of Blues – Anaheim, CA
4/26 – The Wiltern – Los Angeles, CA