The lead singer of rock band Idles has spoken about the role counselling in his life and the creation of their Mercury Prize-nominated album Joy as an Act of Resistance.

Joe Talbot opened up about going to therapy during an interview with DJ Steve Lamacq on his programme on BBC Radio 6.


“I found myself uneasy in my own skin,” said Talbot, as he talked about the influences on the album. “I was in counselling and I realised that for a long time I just felt lonely.

“I have a great support network, good friends and family around me, so it wasn’t that. It was something else.

“I realised that I was ashamed that I wasn’t a complete man to the perspective of what I had been told was a complete man.

“It’s nonsense and unhealthy and I just wanted to address and explore it.

“Obviously it’s a complex issue, but I just wanted to get down to the nitty gritty and talk about the basicness of it and how dangerous that can be on a grander scale.”

He added: “This whole album was a reflection on all of us looking inwards and exploring ourselves and becoming better people in order to become better musicians.”


Joy as an Act of Resistance is one of 12 albums nominated for the prestigious Mercury Prize. The awards take place on Thursday, September 19 in London.

Idles were formed in 2009 and Joe said that the ability of band members to listen, as well as the outlet of their music, had played a big part in their longevity.

He said: “It was definitely from a love for each other and this underlying knowledge that one day, if we look after each other and carry each other and listen to each other enough, we will become better people from our friendships.

“And the music was a way of us venting together and producing something beautiful from our fractured lives.

“Together we have actually found each other and ourselves and our partners, and we have built a better life and we put that on a record.”

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