Tuesday, August 06, 2019

Storm warnings

Like Richard Herring, John Doran appears to have the happy knack of getting his interviewees to open up. Perhaps it's the hypnotic drone of his voice? Either way, Episode 7 of the Quietus' The Best Of Times podcast featuring Kate Tempest was another fantastic listen.

For polymath Tempest (a rapper, musician, poet, novelist and playwright all rolled into one), the best of times - the period between 2014 and 2017 - were also the worst of times. Just like Doran's first ever guest Jason Williamson of Sleaford Mods, she recalls how professional success came at a time that her personal life was falling apart, and is candid about her struggles against poor mental health and addiction.

Over the course of the episode, Tempest also talks about the overarching narrative of new album The Book Of Traps And Lessons, how producer Rick Rubin pushed her hard, the dangers of writing people you know into your stories, and the difficulties of steering clear of sexist tropes and cliches in characterisation and plot.

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