Willie J Healey premieres ‘Best Friend’s Sister’ video
‘Hey Big Moon’ EP out now
New single ‘Would You Be’ via National Anthem/Columbia Records
“Utterly, perfectly absurd” Noisey
“Brilliantly catchy…the best voice we’ve heard in a while” i-D
“Oxford’s answer to Mac Demarco…turns going nowhere into a saintly virtue” The Beat
“Slack-jawed, refreshingly modern…more than worth the wait” DIY
“Nods variously to Lloyd Cole, Kurt Vile, and 90s Grunge” The Times, Essential Tracks
“Bigger and bolder…Healey stands out from the crowd” The Line of Best Fit
Willie J Healey has premiered the surreal video for ‘Best Friend’s Sister’, which is out now via National Anthem / Columbia Records as part of his ‘Hey Big Moon’ EP (written and recorded during a 4-day stint locked in his bedroom). He has also just concluded a set of dates with Hinds – having previously toured with Beach Baby and Summer Camp – in addition to further solo shows.
As drawn to lo-fi slackers like Mac Demarco and Ariel Pink as classic US storytellers like Bruce Springsteen or Lou Reed, 22-year-old Oxford-based misfit Willie J Healey’s songs explore themes of alienation and escape. It’s an open-road soundtrack which feels both warmly familiar in its lackadaisical stylings, and refreshing in its celebration of youth and young manhood. The ‘Hey Big Moon’ EP was preceded by recent single ‘Would You Be’, a sprawling three-minute pop leviathan which feels restless in its twists, turns, and befits a songwriter getting lost in his own world.
Willie’s formative recordings have informed a gradual transformation which began when leaving college. He worked for his dad as a plasterer for a couple of years, travelling around his everybody-knows-everybody town in a battered old limo by way of eye-catching transportation. Songs were written and self-produced by Willie in his garage, lending the likes of ‘Best Friend’s Sister’ or ‘Would You Be’ their gruff, raw energy. Yet it’s a sound which is suitably panoramic, and pan-Atlantic: equal inspiration comes from cult film classics, The Girl Next Door, and subverting small-town tedium into wry and invigorating lyricism. It’s true to himself, constructed by himself, and mostly for himself, but it’s a sound that Willie J Healey looks set to drive further forward still.