Words: James Frostick
Artist image: Strey Katt
Melbourne-via-Berlin darkwave artist V builds up momentum to the release of their new record So Pure with the release of the visuals for single ‘Not Ready 4 This’. The track grapples with the aspect of grief and its undeniable power to shape us and bring us low.
Grief is a terrifying thing. Much like the fear of death itself, to grieve is to endure a process of adjustment – the acceptance of total and permanent absence. In grief we mourn an irrevocable removal of something crucial, the loss of a steadying force that leaves us unbalanced when gone. Grief is an emotion that is intrinsic to the human condition, an edifying force that leaves us more in tune with our own selves, though the process never gets easier no matter how many times we suffer it. Grief and the connections we make with others is a key underlying theme of So Pure, the forthcoming album from the multi-disciplinary artist known as V. A master of dark tonality, V’s goth-tinged synthwave is a vehicle in which the artist communicates their thoughts on death and what’s left behind in its wake.
‘Not Ready 4 This’ is the second track to be plucked in the lead-up to the record’s February 15 release through Dero Arcade – another driving deluge of subterranean surge, a propulsive slice of darkwave unce. On top of cascading synths and primitive drum patterns, V morosely stands at a precipice. V stands overlooking at the abyss – the terrifying and yawning maw of nothing – and grapples with the fact that what has been cast in cannot be retrieved, and mourns what was once essential. To my ears, V readies themselves to succumb to the darkness themselves. They ask, ‘Are you ready?’ It’s an impossible question to answer.
The song features an accompanying clip. Here, V stalks the streets, passing several familiar faces on the way to a show. Once on stage, V gives us a glimpse at their engrossing live presence and the effect on their congregation – a swaying and heaving mass of bodies lost to the rhythm. At a crucial moment V surfs on top of the crowd. Folks with an analytical mind or penchant for metaphors might take that to signify V succumbing to grief, but is buoyed and supported by friendly faces. Perhaps subliminally V acknowledges that while no one is ready for grief, we’re never alone in facing it. In any case, V’s musings on loss imbue their dark and inhuman sonics with a pulsing, beating heart.
So Pure is dropping on February 15 through Dero Arcade. You can pre-order the record right now.