‘Sore’ was a whirlwind of a record. Carrying Dilly Dally, once all teenage dreams, buddy tattoos, desire and fury, around the world and into the spotlight, it wasn’t so much a debut album as a force of nature. Wide-eyed, and driven by the excitement for the new, its energy was contagious. Then it stopped.
“We disappeared for a second there,” grins Katie Monks. “It’s ‘cos it had to be natural. It had to come from a genuine place so we, in that Dilly Dally way, took our time with it.”
Now the band are back, alive and kicking. They almost weren’t, though. Towards the end of touring ‘Sore’, everything got too much. Their friendships began to splinter, victims of a gruelling, relentless tour schedule and a world in turmoil. There was a darkness weighing down on the band.
“Me and Liz [Ball, guitar] started this band so it could be a backbone for our lives, anything else could happen, but we would always have Dilly Dally. Suddenly Dilly Dally became a question mark, and I felt like the ground fell from underneath me at the same time the world felt like it was crashing down on us. There was chaos all around.
“We were on tour the month before and the month after the Trump election, and there was a tension that came with that. Everything that was happening with ‘Sore’ was amazing, the album was being received so well, and it was everything we wanted, but everything else was falling apart.”
Taking a break once their many touring commitments were done, Dilly Dally returned home to try and make sense of what was going on around them and between them. Katie tried to find her answers in music.
“As soon as we were done touring the first record, I was writing a new one. That was on my mind every day of 2017. I could get away with leaving social media for a year and working on my own mental and spiritual health, which was a blessing.
“In the beginning, there was lots of meditating, and I was alone a lot. I was feeling around in the dark for a long time before I knew what the album was going to be, or who I was going to be making it with exactly.
“There was a lot in question about the band. At first, I had the mentality of okay; I’m just going to write this by myself. A hundred hours of new material later and no songs I realised, oh yeah… I’m going to need some help structuring these ideas.”