When we last featured multi-media artist and composer Nelward, we delved somewhat into his creative process and how his deep immersion into online and meme culture affected his offbeat compositions and madcap visual style. And while his video for new single “Apple Shampoo 🍏” travels down a similarly wacky and absurdist path, the track itself presents an opportunity to examine Nick Elward’s considerable gifts as a songwriter.
Blending elements of ’80s synthpop with modern R&B, the song maintains many of the features that make Nelward’s music so unique and inventive—relentlessly playful rhythms, erratic grooves, quirky vocals and lyrics that hover somewhere between outlandish and surprisingly earnest. But strip these defining attributes away and you’re still left with a savvy slice of infectious pop, a cunning display of craftsmanship delivered with confidence and ease. Even Elward’s voice, by no means potent or particularly resonant, is used to maximal effect with each effusive hook adding to the song’s frolicsome appeal.
Visually, the video moves with the same unabating pace as its aforementioned predecessor, combining both sights and sounds into a hyperactive collage that’s part goofy surrealism and part pop culture reverence. It’s the sort of thing that’s widely open to interpretation if you’re the type that gravitates towards meaning, but mostly it’s just ridiculous, unapologetic fun.
Watch it above.
“Apple Shampoo 🍏” is the first single from Nelward’s forthcoming EP, Alive in Screen, out Nov. 22 via DESKPOP. Pre-orders are available here.
Nelward will perform tonight at the Casa Nova alongside Broken Field Runner, Starving Arts, and Organ Machines. Doors open at 9 p.m. Admission is $5. All Ages.