Today Ethan P. Flynn releases ‘Distraught’ – the third single off his upcoming EP Universal Deluge. Flynn is a songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who’s collaborated with the likes of David Byrne, FKA Twigs and supported Slowthai on tour (the latter noted that Flynn is “as great as Bowie”). This name-dropping is not to fill space, but demonstrates the nature and scale of collaborations that Flynn’s experimental and thought-provoking music has led to.
Explorations of electronica sit at the heart of Flynn’s newest track. An interplay of acoustic guitar and flute, pained lyrics, synths and sounds resembling wired up sitars and lutes coalesce to create an unfolding drama. This musical density allows listeners to pick up a new textural element with each return – an experience akin to Crack Cloud’s ‘Pain Olympics’, or SOPHIE’s ‘OIL OF EVERY PEARL’S UN-INSIDES’.
Having already released ‘The Universal Deluge’ and ‘Father Of Nine’ in the run up to the EP, the undercurrent running through all three songs is an affinity for the aquatic. Describing his music, Flynn notes that many of his lyrics “have some kind of reference to a flood or rain or water” but doesn’t know why. In evading concrete explanation, this allows the listener’s imagination to run loose.
This is furthered by the track’s surreal video directed by Ethan & Tom. Combining shots of athletic diving, a man submerged underwater and abject landscapes overrun with detritus. These shots establish a tension that harks on biblical Deluge and COVID – themes Flynn took inspiration from and drew links between.
Ultimately, ‘Distraught’ and its predecessors form an intricate and coherent sonic landscape that will only continue to grow. Flynn’s music signals an exciting shift towards embracing and exploring the idiosyncrasies of pop, rather than treating the genre as faux-pas (as is often the case… “I don’t listen to pop music, it’s all rubbish. But have you heard the new Warmduscher album?”). We’re very excited to see where Flynn takes his music next, but for now, enjoy his latest track and video below.
Photo by Aliyah Otchere
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