[I]t’s been three years since BANKS surfaced the music zeitgeist. After the release of her EP London she was a cover star of Hunger Issue 7, and ended our interview by reminding us to always “be unapologetically you”. It’s stellar advice for her fans, but also a sentiment the enigmatic singer fervently applies to herself too.
BANKS’ second album The Altar was released last week. Featuring songs like Fuck with Myself and Gemini Feed, it’s an expulsion of insecurity and a submersion into our dualities and contradictions. Never one to swim in the emotional shallow end, BANKS prefers to go as deep as humanly possible, she does so with obsidian R&B beats and an inimitable vocal range, which on this album, has been pushed and challenged further than we’ve ever heard from her.
The alchemy of BANKS is rooted in her ability to replicate feelings with her music. Seldom light-hearted, her emotional processing resonates with her legions of fans in a way that’s established her as an indelible force in the music industry, even if the “industry” stuff isn’t really her scene. We caught up with her to discuss some of the dualities in her latest album, introvert vs extrovert and how she’s been fucking with herself more than anybody else.