NTHN's sound has evolved throughout 2019. The UK-based singer/songwriter and producer combines a surplus of inspiration from everyday life in order to create the very stories and soundings we receive from him today. NTHN has always created music to connect to his vulnerabilities and emulate that to his listeners. When we saw the releases of his EP "Tides", we felt like we were in for a real imaginative treat with NTHN. He begins off his 2019 EP release with "Sirens", an instrumental track that begins off with a melancholic tuning, but swiftly blends into a melodramatic production with a deep and echoing ambiance. Eventually, we're entirely captivated by the ethereal synths and genuine embrace the song takes on. As we migrate further into the instrumental world of NTHN, we come across tracks like "Adrift", which features the vocal harmonies of NTHN, as he uses his instrumental collection with his contemporary take on the Hip/Hop category. "Adrift" is a laidback, chill kind of environment that many can resonate with.
Some singles 2019 saw from NTHN were "Remember" and "Stay a While". The two tracks highlight elements that we don't see in the other tracks from NTHN, similar to his EP. That's an element to NTHN that we've really come to appreciate--his ability to lay out tracks that each encompasses a varying atmosphere and striving to connect with listeners in different ways. As we near the end of our brief overlook NTHN's 2019, we come to speak on our favourite track he released this year: "Emersion". The track has such similar soundings to the likes of Twenty One Pilots, with that quick and spoken-word vocalism that's ever so prominent in the alternative world of music today. NTHN's music is undoubtedly an experience to undergo as any listener. He offers up the most versatile tracklist we've seen from any artist this 2019. We're genuinely looking forward to what we hear next from NTHN, as his sound will always carry a special place in our music-loving hearts.
Give a listen to NTHN's 2019 soundings here!
Hey there, NTHN! Welcome, and congratulations on a successful 2019 regarding your music releases! This past year saw a ton of releases from you. Which ones resonated with you the most?!
Hey! Thank you very much, it's definitely been a good year for me. I feel like I'm finally finding my sound now, which is reassuring. I think my Tides EP was a huge step, as it's the most personal project I've made to date. It was the start of me addressing things that I've always wanted to share but never had the confidence to do so, and it also my first project with vocals, so it's really special to me. We know that through your music you've always wanted to encapture integral messages in order to relay them to your listeners. What would you say was the predominant theme and/or message of your EP "Tides" that 2019 saw? Tides was definitely about getting a message out to whoever I could reach with it - both for myself and for the listener. The whole EP was about dealing with depression and struggling with mental health but I used the seaside town I was living in at the time as a vehicle to do so. It all started with 'The Forecast Warned of a Storm' when I realised there were parallels between my environment and how I was feeling, so I decided to play on that and work it into a concept EP. I tried to be as honest as possible and, for the first time, openly discuss how I was feeling. My aim was to encourage communication and, by showing all of my vulnerability, hopefully encourage others to do the same. Another angle I wanted to take was to set an example and encourage groups who would be not used to communicating how they feel, particularly men suffering with their mental health. Vulnerability and fragility aren't really considered 'masculine' traits and it's very easy to get into the habit of hiding emotion and just getting on with things but there's only so long you can do that before it'll get the better of you. Music is a brilliant way to break out of these conventions and show that it's not weak to do so; IDLES are a band that has had a huge impact by doing this, even building a strong community of listeners through their AF Gang who are not afraid to speak out and support one another. I love the idea of reaching people in a similar situation who feel the same and providing at least some reassurance that we're all just doing our best and it's okay to struggle at times. I guess that's what I try to do in my music - just be as honest and genuine as possible and hopefully reach listeners who need to hear that. You have such a natural touch when it comes to creating your sound. Where have you learned to curate your music in the way you do today? Wow, that's a huge compliment - thanks! To be honest, I'm completely self-taught when it comes to production so I'm sure I have a tonne of bad habits and examples of poor practice in how I make music haha. It all just came through a lot of trial and error, resorting to the odd tutorial video when I was a bit lost. I started guitar lessons when I was 6 so I have quite an ear for music but it was never with sheet music or much theory, just a love for playing. That's probably where my more experimental side comes in, since I don't always know the correct ways to do things, I just know how I want them to sound and roughly how to get there! One of our favourite tracks from you, 'Emersion", was replayed on our playlists countless times! Can you delve more into the track and how the production was sparked? 'Emersion' is just a complete stream of consciousness and came together very quickly - it's a really honest and raw one. I just wanted to get out everything I was feeling at the time and wrote it in one night. It started as a simple guitar track when I wrote it, which can be heard resampled at the start before all the atmospheric production begins. That's how some of my tracks start when I need to get an idea down, as it's the most natural way of making music for me on an instrument I'm comfortable with. Then I just started to write. The track is about the habits I get into when I feel low and my dependence on finding distractions to get out of my own head, despite the fact that these distractions (such as technology and social media) are really not helpful when you feel like that. It references the black mirror effect and how I find myself refreshing the same information and following the same stories just to avoid the timeout and black screen, as it forces me to reflect on myself. The idea of re-reading the posts and watching the same stories on social media despite knowing how they end is also a reflection of how these low periods are cyclical and I've been through this before, yet I still don't quite manage to convince myself that it's fine and I'll get over it soon enough. By the end of the track, there's a step towards this and the understanding that it's okay not to always be in control, so it's not completely negative and I don't see it as a sad song at all. It was the first time I had ever been so honest and confronted my emotions and that's where the title 'Emersion' comes from - this was me finally getting my head above water. Are you one to plan certain goals for yourself through the New Year?! What do you hope to accomplish and/or what goals have you set for yourself artistically for 2020? I do like to have goals but I don't always put a time limit on them... that's probably something I should start doing. However, I want to continue to increase my confidence in recording vocals and try to get myself out there a little more. I love making music but at the moment it's very much a hobby rather than a career, so it would be great to take it a step further and try to get heard a little more. I'd also love to find more artists to work with, as I love collaborating and mixing different musical influences and styles. I'm planning to release at least a couple of solo projects and maybe some collaborative ones if I can get organized! Thanks, NTHN for coming on BuzzMusic to talk about your 2019! We're highly anticipating new work from you in 2020. Are there currently any tracks in the mix, or perhaps any live shows coming up over the next few months?!
Well, I've finally finished the album I've been working on for the past year called 'Delta' and that will be released in Spring 2020, so that's very exciting for me! It's even more honest than Tides was and I've not held back at all, both in the writing and the production. There will be a couple of singles that I'll bring out for that before the album and I have tonnes of unreleased tracks which may make their way into some EPs too, so I'm going to be putting plenty of new material out! As for performing, I haven't started yet as I've been building my confidence up and getting a library of tracks together but I've been thinking about it for quite a while and I think I need to give it a go... It's a bit daunting but I'm excited to try it! Maybe that could be one of my goals for the year.