Culture, Music, Review

Review: Genre-Defying Artist Ted When Releases an Enchantingly Cinematic Video With Black Lake for Moving Track ‘Nothing Left’

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Featured Image: Adri Law

Nashville-based artist Ted When is an accomplished singer, songwriter, and producer, intent on shaking up the music scene one cinematically articulated release at a time. It almost feels wrong to pigeonhole him into a certain genre as his music is an eclectic mix of indie-pop with elements of electronica and psychedelia. Building on the pioneering expeditions of the likes of Glass Animals and Tame Impala, his music transcends all limits.

Adri Law

When wasn’t always a solo artist, he used to be the frontman of the successful indie band, Mansions on the Moon. He’s also toured with the likes of Wiz Khalifa and Mac Miller, in addition to working in the studio with The Neptunes. It’s interesting to hear how each experience has shaped his work – undoubtedly influencing him. Celebrating the joy of the beginning of the day, his debut EP, morning, was released last July, with ‘Nothing Left’ as the lead track. Swiftly followed by morning FOOL’S GOLD REMIXES, it shows an inventive reimagination of each of his previous tracks. Contrasting the former, his most recent EP release, evening, celebrates the mysterious quality of night. It features several stripped-back versions of his previous tracks, as well as two new releases – it’s worth noting that the acoustic additions really allow his soaring vocals to shine. 

‘Nothing Left’ is pure indie-electronica with a wonderfully rolling beat. Off the bat, the intro features his signature style of shimmering percussion, which builds for the chorus. His vocals have an ethereal quality, which will immediately capture your attention. It perfectly fits the delicate, dream-like essence of the track. The lyrics are naturally inquisitive, as the track is led by questions, such as “How you gonna love with no heart left?”, and “How you gonna live when they take away your soul?”. The crux of what makes him such an exciting prospect is that not only does he question how an artist should approach music, but he also causes us to question ourselves too. We may be stuck in a pandemic, but we’re encouraged to accompany him on a journey of self-discovery through his music.

Collaborating with Canadian filmmaking collective Black Lake (Martin Garrix & Khalid, 30 Seconds To Mars, Shallou), he has released his first video with them for his track, ‘Nothing Left’, which features on his debut EP, morning. It’s the first video in a planned six-part series. 

About the track, he has previously stated, “I always approach my music cinematically. I feel the video we created with Blacklake expands the surreal nature of my sound.”

The video for ‘Nothing Left’ instantly appears otherworldly. On Instagram, he noted that they were, “going for the simple and the surreal” – and that’s exactly what they achieved. Beginning in the forest at night, the differences between light and dark are skillfully played with. The first character we’re introduced to is a woman who is led from her home to the forest by a glowing orb. The different dancing colours of light fit the synth-driven sound perfectly. The changing perspectives and focus on the enchanting mystery of nature is beautifully done. In the end, we see the woman make it to a clearing underneath a mystifying sky, with colours almost mimicking the Northern Lights.

The next videos in the collection are expected to be released every other Thursday. The video for ‘Edge Off’ will be released on the 4th of March, ‘Guide Me Home’ on the 18th of March, ‘Good Things’ on the 1st of April, ‘Eyes Closed’ on the 15th of April, and the collection will be concluded with ‘Don’t Feel Like Feeling’ on the 29th of April. Each release is the perfect opportunity to indulge in a dash of escapism.

The theme of discovery is set to be central to the following five videos, alongside a host of other characters, who each have a different personal journey to embark on. Despite having different surroundings, they will each come across the shining orb as seen in ‘Nothing Left’. 

Make sure out to look out for his next music video release, and you can view the video for ‘Nothing Left’ here. You can stream and download his latest EP, evening, here.

Keep up with Ted When:

Spotify | YouTube | Website | Instagram  | Twitter  | Facebook 

About the author / 

Camilla Whitfield

Fourth Year BA English with Overseas Study | Music Editor | Manchester & Leipzig | Music & Gig Enthusiast

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