Singled Out: Will Varley's Wedding & Wars
On my first record there was a song called 'King For A King' which was an attempt to tell the story of someone's life from birth to old age, and hopefully ask questions about what our expectations are for the time we all have here, and whether we can beat them.
When it came to writing the second album, I wanted to do something similar, but somehow step it up a gear. I decided the next step would be to write a song about the whole history of man, and try and highlight how little we've changed even though we think we're so modern these days. So anyway, that's what I did!
It was definitely the hardest song on the album to write, as in I re-drafted the lyrics about a thousand times and there was lots of ideas that I had that never made it into the final song. Trying to fit a few billion years of history into a few dozen lyrics, you have to cut a lot of stuff out. The thing is, I didn't want it to sound like a history lesson, like I wanted there to be some emotional meat to the song as oppose to just dates and facts, and I wanted things to connect from one end of it to the other.
We recorded it along with the rest of the album and I'd say it's one of my favorite songs on the record. A chap called Aidan Shepherd from the band 'Arlet' came and played some accordian on it, and Nicola Vella did some really nice vocal harmonies. The producer's brother James Hatton, who's a sublime drummer dropped by too and laid down a little percussion.
I had the idea for the video while I was sitting on a long coach ride from Paris back to London. I went out there to see Dylan play and I was really hungover trying to keep my head on this busy old eight hour coach ride. We got held at customs for a few hours, in the middle of the night, because the police thought this lady was using a fake passport. Eventually they let us go, but the lady didn't come with us. Anyway I was watching this kid playing a game on his mobile phone and I thought it maybe it would be a good idea for a music video.
I started working on it the day I got back. All in all it took me six weeks working most days and through the nights. I had to learn to use the animation software too, so there was a couple of false starts. My girlfriend was working in a kitchen in London and I just sat in her flat in Camberwell fiddling around with the software and drawing pictures. I'm really happy with how well it's been received. People seem to really like it, and it's had a tonne of views already...