It’s about time we discovered new music together. Today’s featured artist is Lauriel, a 22-year-old singer-songwriter who just dropped her very first music video. The highly stylized clip for poppy “Rival” features Lauriel donning all kinds of fantastical pieces of wardrobe that you might find inside Lady Gaga’s closet. As soon as one Lauriel claims power amongst her tribal inner circle, another comes into play and takes over by violently taking out her predecessor. But what does it all mean? I spoke directly with the source:
Lauriel likens “Rival” to “Fight Club as a Greek tragedy.” Interestingly, she explains that her influences “are not necessarily musical and were more colors, and historical time periods, art, literature, and my own experiences.” The song is very personal for the young artist. “It’s about doubt and battling the voice in your head that tells you you can’t do something, or you’re not good enough. The bridge was a big moment for me because it’s me talking directly to that internal nay sayer–‘I’m in control here, I’ll survive and persevere without doubt but you can’t carry on unless I give you power to.’ That’s what the whole song is about, that power struggle. I think the video reflects that.”
With that said, Lauriel hopes viewers will watch the playful yet harrowing visuals and interpret it for themselves. “I wasn’t thinking about messages, I figured people would take what they want to from it,” she adds. “Some people will see it very literally, some will want it to open conversation about suicide, some people will see it as rebirth, throwing out the past and old selves that you don’t want to be anymore. I think it’s all accurate in a way, with art there’s generally no right answer. It’s just meant to make you feel and think.”
Whatever you make of it, there’s no denying its gripping vulnerability as Lauriel falls in and out of dramatized versions of herself. Concerning her musical talents, she says she grew up listening to British bands like Queen, The Beatles, and Sex Pistols, as well as old soul bluesy jazz types like Billie Holiday, Otis Redding, Etta James, and Aretha Franklin. She looked to these artists for inspiration when making the soulful, dramatic “Rival.”
Want to hear more from Lauriel? Visit her SoundCloud page to browse a mixtape that’s currently in early stages. Perhaps with positive feedback she’ll be further inspired to release more music that’s as raw and dynamic as what we’ve got here. In the meantime, Lauriel pursues a writing career in film and TV; do you think “Rival” could be a promising seed for a future feature? Sound off in the comments below!