The artist known as Evil has gone by a few different names — B.B., and Babeo Baggins — but their latest iteration feels like their most powerful yet.
As Evil, the Virginia native and musician makes country music that sounds like sunset color skies and wide open expanses, often about the pain of processing tragedy and trauma as a queer Black artist. But there are happy songs too: their latest, “Wrecked,” which NYLON premieres below, is a funky jam with steel pedal guitar, backing strings, and their voice filtering through like a transmission from an old radio. This one’s a song about cycles and rebirth and constant new beginnings: “And I welcome the world to see its end/ So I can start all over again, again, again,” they sing on the hook.
“‘Wrecked’ is a song I wrote about destroying my own life by choice and rebuilding it in the way I saw fit,” Evil writes of the song in an email. “Seeing the error in my choices and rather than feeling stuck within a situation choosing to break free of it. Trying your hardest to make something work, in my case a relationship, and only coming up with nothing in the end. It can be crushing and freeing. It's nice to start again, just like it is difficult. But sometimes that's the best outcome we can come up with, again and again and again.”
“Wrecked” is the musician’s second release of 2021 following their last single, the swaying heartbreak ballad “Broken Wing.” Hear “Wrecked” below and read on to learn more about Evil.
What are you up to right now — describe your surroundings.
I'm hanging out in my yard in the Shenandoah Valley. Everything is green again, full of life. Soft grass, singing birds, got a pond right around the corner. There was an abandoned deer fawn living in the bush in my yard last week, it seems he's moved on now. It's an amazing thing to be so small, young and alone but brave enough to continue on into the unknown on your own. I'd like to be that way too. I'm spending some time reading about John Dee and doing some meditating/prayer.
You wrote on Twitter that this song is the first song you've ever made where you refer to yourself directly as your preferred gender (male). How did it feel to make that decision, and to hear yourself sing it?
Ha! Glad you caught that. Yes it is! To make the decision was natural, that's how I already refer to myself inside my own head so to put it down on paper is normal. To sing it in song is a bit different, I think that to be able to express myself as myself is a big deal to me. I get misgendered a lot, due to how I present myself I guess, not that it makes it okay. I don't fight too much about it with the outside world because I am confident in the person I am and everyone who knows me refers to me as my preferred gender. But it can still become daunting when people you've never met refer to you as someone you aren't, so to be able to make a stand for myself, even something so simple as referring to myself as an "honest man" in song is something that fills me with pride and joy.
What's the story and/or meaning behind the name Evil?
I get asked this a lot, rightfully so I guess haha. Evil is a loaded word, which is why you're even asking this. Because of that is a big reason I chose it. I want a dissection of the word when someone sees it being used to apply to me and what I choose to represent. I want someone to question their understanding of evil and how it applies to their life. I have experienced many evils just trying to live my life and the irony of the word "evil" being "live" backwards isn't lost on me. We all face a lot of difficult things to just live another day, face a lot of evil just to get on the other side and live. There are a lot of meanings hidden in the word "evil" for me, but this is the most important one I think.
Besides making music, what do you like to do in your free time?
Lots of things! Spend time with animals, read comic books, learn about obscure things. Right now I'm really into learning about Enochian Magic. I love angels so it's been really enlightening for me. Been getting a ton of biblically correct angel tattoos haha. Your body is your art canvas! I treat mine as such.