The newcomer talks pumping single “Youngest At The Party” and his forthcoming EP “I WAS”.
Taking us into the dark underbelly of the drug-fuelled party scene is pop pioneer Vaughan with his latest single “Youngest At The Party”. Coming face to face with self-destruction, the artist takes us on a ride filled with rumbling electronica and striking bursts of percussion. Pulling back the curtain on his own experiences, “Youngest At The Party” starts off with building bass lines for erupting into a party pop anthem.
Speaking on the release, the artist said, “It’s a song about the loss of innocence. It’s about finding myself in places that I wish I had never been. Realising that I was the youngest person there and wondering how I got to this point. How far away from the world did I need to be, to get myself there.”
Accompanied by a video directed by Flower Up Studio, the track is taken from the singer’s recently released sophomore EP “I WAS”. With his sound being reminiscent of Kate Bush and BANKS, we caught up with Vaughan talking new music, his latest track, and what we can expect in the coming months.
Check out the interview…
Hi Vaughan – how have you been during this uncertain time? How has it impacted your music and creativity?
It’s been high highs and low lows…but I’m better now that I’m chatting with you! Throughout this period I’ve been cultivating the uncertainty in my art as much as possible. I’ve been obsessive with my synthesizers, writing lots of poetry and trying to find inspiration in the small things. It’s been giving me lots of time to just face myself, which in some ways has been nice.
Where are you from and how has it influenced you sonically? Who are your musical heroes?
I grew up in a small town called Cranbrook and growing up as a queer person meant that I struggled to feel as though I belonged a lot of the time. This has of course been a big influence. I’m currently finding inspiration through classic literature and the poetry of Charles Bukowski. I love how his alcoholism and tragedy can also be portrayed as beautiful and a comedy. I suppose that’s what I try to do with my own music, show both the dark and the light. Sad lyrics with more upbeat soundscapes.
And how would you describe your genre?
It’s 5am, the sun’s starting to come up. You’re still up, but trying to wind down. We’re chatting about our most vulnerable moments while our feet keep moving, and we’re all looking around the room for someone to hold.
Where are the most unusual places you pull musical inspiration from?
Cinema… I recently watched this absurd Japanese film called Visitor Q, which involved the most disgusting scenes I’ve ever seen in a film. To me the film was about how desensitised we have all become to gore and it reminded me of finding inspiration in the darkest scenes of life. I love the artists who can push the boundaries of conventionalism and commercialism.
Congratulations on your new single “Youngest At The Party” – it’s a pulsing pop song but with dark themes running through – what is it inspired by?
Thank you! ‘Youngest At The Party’ is about my loss of innocence. Repeatedly finding myself in places I wished I had never been, surrounded by other men looking for connection and sharing drugs like condiments on the coffee table.
The music video sees you really disengaged in a house party setting while everything happens around you – what did you want to convey with it?
It’s about being completely vacant in the situations you find yourself in, so the party consumes you. Wanting to be somewhere for the sake of being anywhere. I’m really proud of how this video turned out and a big thanks goes to my talented friends at Flower Up Studio in particular for directing and editing.
And is there one particular lyric that you hope will resonate with listeners?
“Beads of sweat on my body hang like diamonds. But it’s with a cheap-feeling; not with something rewarding. I wish I’d never been.”
Is it really nerve-wracking putting out music and messaging that is so vulnerable and raw to you?
Honestly, it’s so cathartic for me to speak openly about these issues. The reality is that my story is a mirror into so many others so I feel like showing that raw emotion is incredibly important. The euphoria in the highs and the reality of the lows.
And it’s taken from your forthcoming EP “I WAS” – what can you tell us about it and what ties it all together as a body of work?
The EP is about a darker version of myself that I became accustomed to and about the memories I sometimes wish I could forget. I found myself lost in a pattern of sex, drugs and partying, within a world where we were all just seeking solace. It’s the story of who I was and what I lived through to become the person I am now. All learnings for the person I want to become.
What do you want fans to take from your music?
I hope they see the bare truth behind these stories. How tragedy can become beautiful and you can celebrate the saddest feelings. The depth of these songs goes further than the first listen so I hope they discover the details.
What’s next for you? What are you looking forward to next year?
I really miss the stage but I can’t wait to keep this body of work flowing. All of these EP’s are unveiling parts of my story and we have more coming next year. More on that soon…