William The Conqueror

A character, a mythology, the flicker of a younger self, William the Conqueror is many things, but in simplest terms it is the name of a band put together by songwriter Ruarri Joseph, alongside his close musical conspirators Harry Harding and Naomi Holmes.

TT Fan Park

William the Conqueror began as a temporary plan – not so much a band or a pseudonym – as a way to play live with new material in between Ruarri Joseph albums. And yet it unleashed his song writing and with it, a musical exploration of sound, stretching from the grungy roots of Kurt Cobain and Billy Corgan to blues, Americana and warm soul.

Indeed, such was the momentum of Joseph’s creativity, the band soon embarked on a trilogy of autobiographical albums, which began with 2017’s Proud Disturber of the Peace. That first record proved to be a sublime collection of songs that captured Joseph’s early life in rural Cornwall; the long, fearless days; the glory of bike rides, den-building, rope swings; the dappled half-light of memory and imagination.

Production by Ethan Johns, 2019’s follow up record, Bleeding On the Soundtrack, goes on to address a less idyllic period in Joseph’s life. It carries hope, humour, sorrow and honesty, all the while showcasing the band’s extraordinary musical diversity. It is a reflection of the band’s desire to never be labelled as one thing, a refusal to fit into any genre, to always keep moving. To make music, perhaps, that is distinctly William the Conqueror: joyful and boundless and bold.

Labelled the best live trio in the UK, William the Conqueror will play the main stage in the TT Fan Park on Sunday 7th June. The event is free to attend.