The Civil Wars’ new album will be out in four weeks, but Joy Williams and John Paul White haven’t gotten any closer to patching things up. In her first interview since the band’s breakup, Williams talked to the Associated Press about the duo’s final shows together, their strained friendship and her new life as a mom.
“This album chronicles loss and regret and anger and victory and sweetness and loyalty,” she said, “and I hope that people get the chance to listen to it. What I’ve noticed is people may be curious about it, but once they listen to it, they are hooked. … It’s so honest and it’s so rich and, not to toot my own horn, I’m just really proud of what we created together. And we created it together — we just happened to be in a bit of a civil war ourselves.”
To recap, the band called off a European tour last November and took an indefinite hiatus, issuing a press release that cited “internal discord and irreconcilable differences in ambition” as the reasons behind the sudden split. The band is still in limbo, and Williams told the Associated Press that she isn’t speaking to White, either.
“John Paul and I aren’t speaking right now, but to me that doesn’t determine the outcome of the band because if we’re not speaking we can’t determine the outcome of the band at this moment,” she explained. “So the other elephant in the room is what’s happening with the band? The reality is I’m not even quite sure.”
There’s been a lot of speculation about what actually caused the split. Williams didn’t offer up any real answers in the interview, but she did hint that careful listeners might be able to find answers in the new songs.
“This isn’t some marketing ploy to make things more interesting for a second album,” she stressed. “This is my life, and my life is on this album. And if you want to know what happened to the band, listen to the album.”