10 Jul Watch Sons of Bill’s New Video For Believer / Pretender
We’re excited to share Sons of Bill’s wonderful new video for Believer / Pretender, directed by Ry Cox. Take a look below to see what SoB frontman James Wilson has to say about the song and video and make sure you’ve picked up a copy of the album here. Don’t miss them when they hit Europe next month – tour dates and tickets can be found here.
“It’s a guitar part that Sam wrote, and it circled around in the band for years. There was something so nostalgic yet interesting about the melody and we just held onto it. It was so much fun to play, but it always felt like words ruined it somehow– so we just let it sit and waited for the song to come together in its own time.
It was the last song we finished for the record, and I distinctly remember the moment the words started to come together–when I bought a coffee from a barista/musician with sleeve tattoos in my new home of Nashville, and wrote the line “Put all your secrets under your skin.” It was this this sad feeling looking across the counter– that neither of us have any depth–any meaningful internal life– nothing real to say to each other– but maybe another tattoo will convince the outside world that we have something to say– which is sadly maybe all we wanted in the first place.
You never really know what a song is about when you write it, you’re just following your goosebumps, but in hindsight I think the song is sort of a meditation on personal illusions. All of us have them, but for me specifically they all circle around my desire to continue to make music in adult life– especially in a superficial cultural and economic climate that continues to devalue the arts.
There is this Chinese finger trap you can get yourself into in adult life where you’re never quite sure which part of you is still genuine and which part of you has learned to fake it– which part of you plays music just for the love of it, and which part of you just desperately wants to be loved. I think this is probably a timeless human predicament, but technology and social media especially has ratcheted this tension up to debilitating levels in modern life. There is this increasing gulf between our true selves and the self we continually try to affirm and project to the outside world. Our true identity has become something hidden and mysterious– hidden from the outside world, but also, strangely, hidden from ourselves.
So I think the song is mostly me singing to myself– the parts of me that remain earnest and true, and the parts of myself that have learned to fake it. There are innocent illusions we lose in growing older, and there are illusions about ourselves we inevitably take on as a means of making the realities of adult life more bearable. Its a tension Faulkner likens to “trying to stuff a cat into a flour sack”– a feeling that our director, Ry Cox, tried to capture in the video.” – James Wilson