Seasons is the second single by London-based singer songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer, Cerian, from her upcoming EP Caught in the Dark. Described as “the purest voice on radio” and tipped by Music Republic Magazine as one of their “ones to watch” in 2019, Cerian now releases the official video to accompany the single, which has already garnered glowing reviews.
Seasons is a beautiful genre-defying ethereal piece of alt folk pop based around two lines of poetry by Lewis Carroll, which reveal themselves gradually throughout the song:
“In a Wonderland they lie, Dreaming as the days go by, Dreaming as the Summers die.”
Taking Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland as a starting point, and using the seasons as a metaphor for love and the passage of time, this video takes us to a distant wonderland, where epic drone shots and detailed close ups showcase the verdant greens of nature echoing the vivid colour references in the song. The lyrics in Seasons heavily reference painting, with colour playing a thematic role in the development of the video, moving first from the green of Spring representing the newness of a first love, then to the vivid colours experienced when in love, finally ending in the coldness of blue Winter felt by this love now lost. Also a talented artist, Cerian has created all the art and paintings that accompany her releases – and both sonically and literally paints the evocative pictures that Seasons conjure.
Lewis Carroll’s poem provided further inspiration for the central narrative direction the video would take:
“Still she haunts me, phantomwise, Alice moving under skies, Never seen by waking eyes.”
Flipping this idea around, Cerian takes the role of the protagonist as Alice, searching for her lost love, a phantom figure which we never see clearly. Cerian explains,
“We wanted the video to be a poetic representation of the themes of the song – time, seasons, love, hope, dreams, sadness and separation. We used the metaphor of Alice in Wonderland constantly searching for something she can never find, the object of her desire being the lost love, who is constantly out of reach.”
In order to convey this separation and the passage of time, different scenes were filmed at different times of day. Shot and directed by filmmaker Bartek Podkowa of Seven Hills Films, most of the filming took place in the lush green countryside surrounding his native Lublin, Poland, whilst Cerian was on tour there last year.
Classically trained in harp, piano, and guitar, Cerian brings her varied skills together in atmospheric production, with Seasons featuring entrancing soundscapes which may be likened to London Grammar and Active Child. The song opens on a chorus of 4-part harmony, reminiscent of a real-life vocoder. Cerian’s beautiful soprano dramatically soars above a haunting perpetual motion in electric guitar that continues relentlessly throughout the song, representing time itself. These rich layers of guitar and piano lie above epic orchestral drums, interwoven with melancholic cello and twinkling harp in a uniquely dark dream-pop setting.
Cerian has contributed her vocals to an impressive array of artists, including U2, Radiohead, Sam Smith, Thom Yorke, Imogen Heap, Neneh Cherry, Tom Chaplin, Nakhane, Charlotte Church, Laura Mvula and Amber Run. Once she began performing her own work as a solo artist, her vocal dexterity and range – combined with emotive and truthful songwriting – quickly resulted in comparisons to Joni Mitchell and Kate Bush. Her songs have garnered BBC Radio play, and Cerian has quickly gained a reputation as a captivating live performer from appearances at Glastonbury Festival, Bush Hall and two sold-out headline shows at The National Portrait Gallery.
Artist’s Website: http://www.cerianmusic.com