With a name & album that stands out from the crowd Yoav is definitely an artist to look out for this year. The Budding Artist Releases his Brand New Album “A Foolproof Escape Plan” On February 14th. I managed to catch up with him on his Flight Back From Cape Town to speak about the new Project, Touring & His Future Plans.
Hey Yoav, how are you? Where are you now?
I am good. A little weary. Just flew into London from Cape Town.
Any goals or targets set for the New Year?
Too many to achieve. Samurai discipline, finishing a new bunch of tunes, listening to new music every day ,travel, have adventures, keep writing & writing that's the stuff I have control over. Other than that, I just want to keep reaching more people and connecting in more and more countries. Some collaboration with other artists would be very cool as well.
I noticed that you have some South African Roots, Does this have an influence on your music?
I think lyrically I am influenced by having been a young kid in apartheid South Africa. Watching the news and knowing it was propaganda, seeing how messed up things were and being powerless to do anything about it at the time. Then when everything changed in the early 90's, even the history books changed. I started writing as a kid even before I could play guitar and all of that taught me to look closer and to find my own points of view. I am sure being around African music has influenced me, especially my percussive guitar style, but I reckon that most of my musical evolution came out of my time in New York City diving into every genre and scene I could find.
The new album “A Foolproof Escape Plan ” Is out on the 14th February in the UK.
Is it released on Valentine’s Day for a reason?
Ah, I had not noticed that, well I don't have a girlfriend these days, so at least it looks like I will be busy on Valentine's Day.
You will be touring throughout March and April, Are you excited about that?
Are There any particular cities that you are excited about playing in or going to?
I am excited to be back out on the road- especially once it starts to get a bit warmer and once I am into the swing of things and playing razor sharp, it usually takes a couple of shows. I am doing a really comprehensive French tour which will take me to a lot of places I have never been and that's always exciting. It's been 2 years since my last UK run, so that should be fun as well. Especially my theatre gig in London on February 24th.
What motivates you to keep writing and making records?
It's what I do. It's what I've done since I can remember. My guitar and tunes have taken me round the world, given me the most weird and wondrous adventures, introduced me to some fascinating people. But ultimately I love beautiful pop music especially when it has a bit of darkness and weight to it. The world needs more of it, I want to make more of it and I have no choice but to find ways to keep evolving it and making it happen.
You have an incredible fan base. How do you keep in touch with them?
I have had some hits in several countries, but I am by no means a mainstream worldwide commercial act. I was really fortunate with my debut record to connect to so many people in so many countries that's the beauty of us being so connected for the first time in our history. Some of the strangest places I never thought I would be popular that I get many messages from are: Ecuador, Iran, Egypt, Indonesia, Poland, & all across Russia, not to mention some of the more obvious places. My social platforms allow me to be in touch with my fans. Otherwise I would have no idea about my music connecting in these spots.
What can Yoav fans expect from this new album?
I learned so much in the last album cycle. I've let go the nasty perfectionist streak (to an extent) that has dogged me in the past, so a lot of the vocals are first take. I worked quickly so that the soul of the songs could come through. I didn't limit myself to the guitar. I also played piano and other stuff. I even had a few other musicians come and help out. Joey Waronker, the producer, is an amazing musician (Beck, Thom Yorke and the whole team) helped me get awesome sounds and amazing performances. My life was a bit crazed leading up to making A Foolproof Escape Plan. Lots of old structures and comfort zones falling apart in my world and of course around the world. The lyrics feel older and wiser as a result.
Did you feel any pressure recording this project?
Certainly/ I was not at all ready after the Charmed and Strange record had run its course. A heartbreaking breakup happened just as I started to write the new record, and sad as it was, it served as the catalyst for the first few tunes like Spider song and Little Black Box. Then I spent time in London, L.A. and Cape Town writing and travelling randomly. I hitched up to Northern Cali and back down to Burning Man, spent some time in the desert, wandered into Transylvania with my guitar on my back and a notebook. Somehow every song fell into place at exactly the right moment, to the point where the last lyric of the last song was finished the day before the cut-off date and I wrapped the last vocal the night before.
What does the future hold for Yoav beyond the touring this spring?
Not sure what the future holds beyond the next 9 weeks. I want to commit deeper to what I am doing there's so much to learn as a singer, player, performer, recording artist, producer, and lyricist. I think my next record will be something a bit different. I have some wicked ideas and plans that I will be drawing up. Probably going to go way more electronic for a bit, who knows, maybe side projects, collabs anything can happen.
Any last words?
I really hope these aren't my last words, or I would have thought of something cooler to say!