Yannis Philippakis Quotes

I never want to listen to the songs in front of people close to me. There’s an emotional honesty in that place where it’s not earnest but it’s vulnerable.


I’m appalled by the tendency of some rock records to perfect everything to the point where it sounds like Botox and polish it so heavily that there’s no humanity left in it.

I started growing roses. I enjoyed the craft of it and that they’re difficult to look after; they can provide joy.

I’m definitely preoccupied by thinking I’m just a biological thing. I want to feel that there’s more, but so often I’m reminded of how we’re just like baboons, basically.

Music was my friend when I was a teenager, and I would inhabit and take comfort in lyrics. That’s how I want to write.

I like the fervor of religious music, the zealous aspect – that preachers can go from a conversational cadence into this passionate singing.

When you’re making an album with people who made your favorite records as a rebellious teenager, it feels like you’ve achieved something.

By the time you finish touring the record, everything that’s exciting to me is what’s ahead of me. I want to write the next paragraph.

If you can express something in the simplest way possible, I think there’s something noble in that. It’s easy to flesh stuff out and get all purple with it, being cryptic and wearing masks… I think it’s a bit adolescent. I wanted to write in a way that was vulnerable. I wanted to have courage in stripping back the opaque stuff so it was just raw. I like lyrics that are a lifeline, that have a purpose to them and are not just meandering around in a masturbatory way. They cut the page.

You can get into a comfort zone writing lyrics, like wearing a mask. But I wanted to feel uncomfortable when I was listening back to the lyrics; I wanted to squirm.

I was definitely inspired by gospel music, or old-school R&B; I got into some Good God gospel compilations.

I like simple writing. I’d rather read Hemingway than Burroughs.

I’m just worn down and weary of bands whose lyrics are cryptic and self-referential.