Billy Davis, Melbourne’s beloved R&B and neo-soul pioneer, just dropped a new album

Billy Davis, Melbourne’s beloved R&B and neo-soul pioneer, just dropped a new album

Words by Tom Parker

Billy Davis is back!

Many of you would be aware of Billy Davis‘ achievements in the local music scene. His work alongside The Good Lords has earned him plenty of accolades, and four years after the release of his beloved debut album, A Family Portrait, the established R&B and neo-soul artist has arrived with album two.

What you need to know

  • Billy Davis has just revealed his sophomore album, This Is What’s Important
  • The album comes four years after his debut record, 2017’s A Family Portrait
  • This Is What’s Important features collaborations with the likes of Jordan Dennis, Genesis Owusu, Ruel and KYE

Keep up with all the latest music news here.

This Is What’s Important sweeps across 13 tracks, boasting collaborations with the likes of Genesis Owusu, Jordan Dennis, Ruel and KYE. Davis’ piano playing takes centre stage throughout the release, something which has always been a strength of the artist.

In fact, the first minute or so of the opening title track, is a gentle piano sequence. It’s as if Davis has just jumped behind the piano to play some chords for a friend, where he’s playing something that’s just sprung to mind. It’s a heartfelt, cosy beginning to the record.

The album’s more upbeat moments come on the bouncy ‘Wilderness’ – featuring Dennis, EMRSN and Chicago-based producer, instrumentalist and vocalist, Phoelix – the soulful pop of ‘I Ain’t’ and the beat-driven ‘Shoulda Known’.

‘Dream No More’, Davis’ collaboration with Genesis Owusu and Ruel, is a dreamy ballad that sees Ruel lead the way, singing of lost love and trying to let go of something close to home.

All in all, Davis’ journey to This Is What’s Important has been significant, with plenty of personal learnings to come from the release – many of which listeners could relate to themselves.

“This album is a culmination of three years of emotions, the highs and the lows, the joys and the sorrows, the ups and downs. Certain songs represent periods of my life, whether that be in the features, the lyrics or the influence,” Davis says of the album.

Davis will be bringing the album on tour, where he’ll be supporting Tones and I on her jaunt across Australia. Locally, Davis will play support slots on Friday April 23 and Saturday April 24 at The Palais Theatre.

This Is What’s Important is out now via Sony Music Entertainment. Give it a spin here. For more on Billy Davis, head to his Facebook and Instagram page.