The Wellington-based folk-rock/alt-pop band In The Shallows drench us in thought-provoking lyricism and chilling instrumentals with their latest single, "Let's Not Start a War."
Comprised of Danni Parsons, Lance Shepherd, Andrew Bain, and Nick Brown, In The Shallows are known for blurring the lines between folk-rock and alternative-pop. Through their mesmerizing vocals, radiant acoustic guitars, and relatable lyrics, In The Shallows are bound o leave listeners feeling a part of something greater.
Delving into an introspective state of mind with their latest single, "Let's Not Start a War," In The Shallows pour their hearts out while soothing us with their blanket of instrumentals. We can't get enough of the complementary stylings between Parsons and Shepherd, as they offer a sonic warm embrace while firmly standing their ground with the wisest of words.
Listening to "Let's Not Start a War," the song opens with a bright and uplifting folk-rock instrumental that brings listeners into a cheerful and relaxed state. As Danni Parsons begins to serenade us with her fluttery and soothing vocals, she begins to elaborate on steering away from someone's 'help,' that's not as needed as it seems. As Lance Shepherd joins in on the hook, both artists send us into bliss with their warm vocal harmonies.
As In The Shallows continue to encourage us not to start a war, their instrumentals begin to expand with help from Andrew Bain's plucky bass licks and Nick Brown's mid-tempo drum arrangements. As the song comes to a close, In The Shallows leaves us with a wise and thoughtful mindset while ending the song on a peaceful and calming note.
Free your mind with help from In The Shallows' recent single, "Let's Not Start a War," now available on all digital streaming platforms.
Welcome to BuzzMusic In The Shallows. We admire the thoughtful and poised approach you've taken with your recent single, "Let's Not Start a War." What inspired the creation of this soothing single?
First-hand experiences. We're usually not alone, as the human experience is shared. If our writing is authentic it usually resonates with others, and that's the approach we take with the writing of our songs.
Who wrote the lyrics for "Let's Not Start a War?" What impact did you want to make on your audience through the song's lyricism?
Danni wrote the lyrics for LNSAW following an encounter with a partner of a friend. It was clear that their judgment was tainted by their own experiences, as this person aggressively projected their view in a situation where it was unsolicited. As is often the case, they couldn't possibly know the complexities of the situation they were passing judgment on. However, this is what humans do. No one knows what goes on behind closed doors and appearances or how someone presents to the rest of the world can be deceiving. Judgments being made about others without all the information, or only one side of the story is such a relevant and contentious issue in the world atm. There is so much polarization in people’s views of what the world should look like and how we should be. So much division has occurred between us due to a lack of capacity for compassion and seeing the world through the eyes of another. It's something worth being aware of and Danni wrote this just as much as a reminder for herself than it is a message for our listeners.
Why did you choose to keep the instrumentals so lush and rather uplifting for "Let's Not Start a War?" How do the instrumentals enhance the song's lyrical theme?
We chose to capture the sound of a band playing all together in a room to give the track more of a retro 90’s vibe, with more of organic, real instruments feel. We arranged the piano and string parts to sound powerful and emotionally charged to tie into the lyrical themes around confrontation.
We've heard that you dropped a music video for "Let's Not Start a War." What story or concept do you tell within the music video's visuals?
We were actually really lucky in that a friend of ours, Cory Bedwell is a matte painter for WETA Digital here in Wellington, NZ. He had been experimenting with an old-school VFX technique called a cloud tank. They were used to create overdramatic cloud effects in movies. We were having a mid-winter Christmas dinner and when he showed me some of his images I instantly saw them as being perfect for the artwork for LNSAW because they had a dark explosive vibe to them. However, because the song is actually about peace and surrender, I asked that he matte pain as a symbol of that, and so he came up with the idea of adding the doves. I really wanted the artwork to represent both the light and dark of the human experience. 'The cover art was created by filling a fish tank with water, then injecting white acrylic paint and warm water with a syringe. In this case, I also added dirt to the bottom of the tank, which I flipped up with a spatula during filming to create a slow-motion explosion look. This art was inspired by my love of VFX, and classic movies such as “Raiders of the Lost Ark”, and “Close Encounters of the Third kind”' - Cory Bedwell
Cory's artwork gave inspiration to the concept of the video, and the reason we had the dancer in there as the symbol of peace/the dove in amongst the band performance footage.
What's next for you?
Unfortunately, we went into lockdown here in NZ 2 days before we released the single, which meant we weren't able to continue on the tour we had begun the weekend before. So at the moment, we are working on rescheduling dates for that. We always have so much we can be done though and as we have generally been quite fortunate here in NZ to not be in lockdown through summer, we were still able to complete a 22 date tour of festivals and venues around NZ. Winter is a great time to hunker down and create more content and music (our debut album was also recorded in the last lockdown of winter 2021), so instead, we will just postpone dates, record more songs we wouldn't otherwise have had time to record and hopefully write some more! Thanks to modern technology, we were still able to do a radio interview and a Livestream performance yesterday for a festival (NZ Spirit's Resolution NYE) that we'll be performing at over New Year. So we're still very much able to keep going in some shape or form, like everyone we just adjust according to the ever-changing global situation. Other than that we have a few more singles up our sleeves to be released towards the end of the year, in time for our big summer tour which is mostly locked in already. Luckily we recorded those with the band before lockdown, which means the release can go ahead as planned!