Dave has said he did not expect “critical acclaim” for his award-winning debut album Psychodrama.
The musician, also known professionally as Santan Dave, went on to the win the coveted Mercury Prize for the album, which was released in 2019.
The 23-year-old, whose full name is David Omoregie, also won the album of the year gong at the 2020 Brit Awards.
Appearing as the cover star on British GQ’s August edition, he said of Psychodrama: “I didn’t expect critical acclaim. The place that I would always want my music to be judged is the place I come from: where I live, where I grew up.
“In Psychodrama I wanted to go and unapologetically say what is going on with me.”
Asked if it worked and if the album “cured him”, he replied: “Nah, not really, you know, when I think about it. Not for me.
“It didn’t serve a purpose for me in terms of staying sane, or therapy, that type of stuff. But, boy, then again, I say this as someone who has made that album.”
The London-born artist’s concept album followed the narrative of a therapy session, and he was lauded for touching on topics such as mental health struggles and difficult social conditions faced by black youngsters.
He is due to release his second album, We’re All Alone In This Together, on July 23.
He told British GQ: “I feel like Psychodrama was me aged zero to 20. Now, I get to go from zero backwards in time and explore stories from before, stuff that led up to the events of the first album: heritage, history, culture, my family, the countries that we come from, the regressive state of humanity in where we are now.
“This album, God willing, will explain itself. There is a magic to it! I feel like my first album was a concept, but this is a canon. That’s the way I’d put it. In this album, it’s referencing itself: it is self-aware.”
The full interview is in the August issue of British GQ available via digital download and on newsstands from July 9.