Premiere | Proudest Ever, "No Introduction"
Following up last February's visual single for "Fresh Kill", Proudest Ever's Kelly Jackson and Phil Maves are back with a first listen and look at the world premiere for their self-directed "No Introduction" video. The NYC duo entertain the idea of what ubiquity and notoriety means in our current era, where the determination of desire is observed as something greater than the sum of all challenging obstacles in its path. Proudest Ever continue to take the conversation to higher levels of reckoning with their own aspirational demands, terms and conditions.
Performing in front of a gray-backdrop; Kelly leads the audience into Proudest Ever's world of conundrums, quandaries and displays of confidence. Phil is seen holding down piano and percussion duties and supplying back-up vocals (complete with pointed ah-ah pronouncements) as Kelly stands steadfast with a timeless vocal pop delivery that counts the contradictions of the world with a knowing smile and sparkle in the eye. The two further illustrate the Proudest Ever aesthetic that offers an updated take on lounge-styled savoir faire with a sharp minimalist economy of modern dialogues and thought. "No Introduction" battles the bravado with their own sense of celebrity where Kelly and Phil collaboratively create according to their hearts' designs—eschewing autographs, introductions and other such inquiries.
Kelly Jackson and Phil Maves of Proudest Ever shared some of their latest perspectives and reflections:
Summer squad goals and dreams for Proudest Ever.
Kelly: Squad goals include putting out more new songs and playing a few shows. Listening to each other's rants on esoteric topics and Phil being a good sport about being made up for the camera. Dreams include pizza at every practice more or less.
The latest news and happenings from the world of Proudest Ever.
Kelly: We're playing The Northside Festival in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY on Thursday, June 7. Our set is at Pete's Candy Store at 9pm. Stop by if you're in NYC!
Phil: We're talking to you!
The stories and introductions, or the lack of introductions, that were the inspirational groundwork for "No Introduction".
Kelly: The lyrical feel is a continuation of the snake oil salesman archetype that I like to explore now and again. Although this time, it's not about selling anything or an idea, but playing a kind of forbidden influencer, outlining ideas of temptation and true nature.
Phil: Musically, it started as a guitar-based dirge, almost a joke song. We put it away for a while, and then I had the idea to rearrange it for piano and drum machine, and that worked for Kelly's vocal style immediately. The finished track sounds like someone went back in time and gave Weimar Berlin musicians a synthesizer and a Sonic Youth album.
Insights into the synergistic evolution of Proudest Ever.
Kelly: Our commitment to follow our collective weirdness to the ends of the Earth strengthens with each composition. We're moving toward interesting territory where our intuition is taking us deeper into a sound and point of view that is increasingly distinct.
Phil: We have a good mix of complimentary and contrasting skills between us. For example, we're both very visual people, and so we collaborate very easily on our videos. But Kelly is a great painter, which I can't really do and I have a good eye for sleeve design, which she tends to leave to me. I think we've learned to give each other both praise and criticism in a mature way, especially because our personalities are so different. We do a good job of supporting each others' ideas, not just in the songs.
Current plans and plots at work in the PE universe.
Kelly: More shows around NYC. More imagery to match our work in the studio, practice space and Muse chasing.
Phil: Not Muse the band, in case you were wondering.
Things that you two would like to see happen in 2018.
Kelly: More labor, more fruits. Continued blessings from the music gods.
Phil: For people to realize that we can't read each others' minds and that we're all mostly hallucinating our own interpretation of events. Mostly.
Wishes, hopes and hymns for our shared future.
Kelly: Greater collective focus on our innate creativity as humans and the joy it brings.
Phil: Less anger, more kindness. Our worst enemy is ourselves, not our neighbors and so-called rivals.
Catch Proudest Ever playing the Northside Festival in Brooklyn at Pete's Candy Store at 9pm, June 7.