It has proven to be quite the year for Ian Matthew, who liberated a handful of content in 2019 while continuously stepping out of any box that had previously been constructed around the man and his artistry. With only a few weeks left before the next decade begins, Ian lets loose a vibey little bop in the form of “Lights Out,” making sure to close out 2019 in an eclectic fashion. After sharing the audio last week, the CT-based artist comes through today with an official visual treatment.
“Lights Out” showcases the fine line Ian walks in regards to creating commercially viable records – there’s no doubt this joint could easily fall into placement on your favorite radio station. But when you listen closely, beneath the catchy delivery and vibrant production, homie is telling a story. Although the music is ambiguous enough to be fully relatable to whoever listens, there is a noticeable depth to his prose and penmanship. And yet he packages it all in melodious vocals, complete with all the effects and pop-influence you’d expect to hear on your morning or evening commute. You can mindlessly vibe to “Lights Out” – and that’s totally cool – or you can get lost in the saga being painted by his enigmatic lyrics. There are leveled dimensions to the track, which aren’t displayed blatantly on the surface – but the more you listen, the clearer it becomes.
Featuring production from Ian Francis, “Lights Out” is enticingly misleading at the jump. For the first fifteen seconds, I was expecting an emotive ballad…but then Francis’ intro gives way to the electronic bounce of a club anthem. The sonic landscape is a wild ride that suits the tone of Ian’s crooning and light dose of lyricism. Again, catchy but not corny. This is not an easy feat to achieve, but our protagonists have mastered it on this one.
The visual, shot and directed by Zachary Greaton, embodies the energy of the music. It’s flashy, lit up and contains just the right amount of eroticism. There are quick shots of scantly clad, steamy scenes but they are tucked beneath the rest of the video – serving a purpose but not becoming the leading role in the play.
“Lights Out” is available now on all major streaming platforms.
In addition to the new visuals, I’ve included a recent flick from Ian for an unplugged rendition of “The Storm.” Featuring keys courtesy of Mikey G. Beats, the stripped down performance highlights the raw, emotional essence of the record. And, perhaps to an even greater extent, the video shines a light on the fact dude can sing.
Press play on both videos below.