William Ryan Key (Ex-Yellowcard) Dives All the Way in with New Experimental EP, ‘Everything Except Desire’ (Listen)

Adrian GarroCategories:Latest News

Rock Cellar Magazine

“I was already waist-deep in the pool, I just decided to dive all the way in.” That’s a phrase singer/songwriter William Ryan Key used in discussing his new EP, Everything Except Desire, with Rock Cellar. The EP was released today, Feb. 11, by Equal Vision Records.

That “pool” he spoke of refers to the stark stylistic shift the longtime front man of Florida-based pop/punk/alternative band Yellowcard took with this new collection of songs.

A fully conscious departure from what came before in his career, the five songs on Everything Except Desire find Key chasing a creative muse that exemplifies his current career ambitions, which include scoring films and television programs. (He also co-hosts a great Star Wars podcast, Thank the Maker, alongside fellow musicians Adam Russell of Story of the Year and Bayside’s Nick Ghanbarian).

“By making these songs and not having them be more acoustic guitar-driven like the first couple of EPs, it allowed me more time to focus on the style of production and composition that hopefully is going to lead me — and/or [former Yellowcard band mate and current Jedha band mate] Ryan and I and/or both — down the path toward scoring and composing full-time.”

This experimental leaning is evident from the start; “The Swim Back” opens the EP with an ambient, enveloping sound that introduces this new set of songs:

“Brighton,” one of the EP’s pre-release tracks, was characterized by Key as “for a night drive with nowhere to go,” and such a description definitely fits:

It’s been almost two decades since Key and his former band, Yellowcard, hit it big with “Ocean Avenue,” and he’s in a much different creative space these days. The five songs on Everything Except Desire present a thoughtful shift in focus that Key would like to consider the precursor to even bigger things.

“I don’t think I ever want to have a song No. 13 on the radio again, that’s just not what I’m looking to do now. I want to go to a movie theater, you know, and kick back and see where it now says, you know, Hans Zimmer, Max Richter, I want it to say my name or or Jedha. Listen to our score. That’s my dream, and we’ll see. You gotta have dreams, though.”

The depth and complexity on display on this EP is a step in that direction, for sure, and anybody interested in it may find something they like — as long as they aren’t expecting music that sounds anything like Yellowcard.

Listen to the EP below.

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