PRIVATE LIFE: Pop Matters Premieres “Hesitation” Video; Debut Album From This Will Destroy You/Shmu Cyber-Synth Offshoot Nears Release Via Dark Operative

[photos by Kristen Cofer]

Pop Matters is hosting a premiere of “Hesitation,” the trippy new video from Texas/California-based psychedelic cyber-synth rock duo PRIVATE LIFE – the collaborative project between Christopher Royal King (This Will Destroy You) and drummer/multi-instrumentalist Sam Chown (Shmu) – as their Silent Partner debut album nears August release through Dark Operative Digital.

PRIVATE LIFE‘s Silent Partner is a fascinating blend of cyberpunk, dream pop, psych, prog, and kraut vibes from the ’70s, bits of thrash, and modern modular electronic synths. Think of it as the latest operating system update for a computer with plenty of Talking Heads, Gang Of Four, and Bloc Party on the hard drive. The album is completed with psychedelic cover art by Keith Rankin.

The new video for “Hesitation” was directed by Anthony Ferrara aka Bokeh Monster. Offers Chown, “The video features Natalie Wetzel, also known as G’NAT. Weirdly enough, I met her through Wayne Coyne, in Miley Cyrus’ Winnebago in Oklahoma City, of all places. Fast forward a couple of years later and a friend of mine had recommended I reach out to Anthony to do a music video. I was supposed to fly out to Los Angeles to be in the video with Chris but for whatever reason, those plans got thwarted. Anthony suggested that he hire actors to be in the video instead. He ended up just using footage of Natalie. When I saw the video for the first time, I was like, how do you know Natalie? Apparently, she was his roommate and longtime good friend.”

Ferrara adds, “Somewhere out there is a feedback loop with your name on it — I sincerely hope all of you get to experience the same immersive, chrono-sensory breakdown I had trying to deconstruct PRIVATE LIFE‘s ‘Hesitation.’ It defies the nesting boxes I put it in, and this struggle became the appeal. Endless love and gratitude for Gnat’s exquisite character work as the Scarlet Cardinal running through those hallways, forever and ever. The only way out is to stop and change.”

Pop Matters posts in part, “The absence of the band in the clip adds to PRIVATE LIFE‘s overall enigmatic presence, the tune imagining the Lemmy-led Hawkwind covering Pink Floyd in a chill backstage lounge somewhere in Middle America. PRIVATE LIFE sounds like the American landscape today: Odd noises, thunderous layers and time that passes with almost hallucinatory rapidity. How do you take a journey to the center of the mind when the mind is rapidly eroding? PRIVATE LIFE seeks to answer that question and, maybe, in its own way, remind us that the best we can do is enjoy the ride.”

See PRIVATE LIFE’s “Hesitation” video at Pop Matters RIGHT HERE.

Dark Operative Digital will release Silent Partner digitally on August 17th; find digital preorders HERE where the track “Bloody Blister” is streaming and watch for a physical version to follow.

The impetus for PRIVATE LIFE stemmed from King’s desire to start a high BPM, futuristic cyber-synth group comprised of him on modular synths with the accompaniment of drums. After a series of conceptual meetings and rehearsals, the duo hatched out schematics and installed configurations wherein Chown’s drums would trigger additional modular synths beyond King’s main melodies. Demos were cut, and the duo saw tremendous sonic potential in their unique approach. A few months later, the duo holed up in Austin’s 5th Street Studios to capture the seven songs that would become their debut album, with overdubs recorded in both Austin and Los Angeles.