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The Orange Apples – “Naked Love”

Music videos can serve a number of purposes for an artist, from marketing a new sound to rebelling against the standards set forth by the preceding generation of musicians to have dominance over the charts, but in the case of The Orange Apples.’ “Naked Love,” a video is used as a means of advancing a narrative beyond the parameters of the studio environment. Merging the visual with the virtuosic aural elements that make the song such a stunner of a single, The Orange Apples. delivers something entirely new wave to the old guard of indie pop here, and to me, that’s something worth writing about this November. 

There aren’t a whole lot of props in the music video for “Naked Love,” but the feeling behind the lyrics is larger than life regardless. It’s perhaps indicative of the icy tone of the vocal harmonies that, even when an instrumental warmth is seeping through the backend of the mix, the washed-out color of the imagery finds itself locked in a trance-inducing cycle with the soundtrack that even the most disciplined of listeners will find themselves getting totally immersed in – and, I should add, I say this having experienced it myself on more than a few occasions. 

The composition itself hints in a rather blunt fashion at a post-punk darkness I want to hear more of from The Orange Apples., but it’s never so prominent in the big picture here that the more delicate angles of the vocal and production design overall get lost in translation. Aesthetical experimentation is the theme of this emerging generation of independent musicians, and provided this singer/songwriter stays on her present trajectory, I don’t see where even material as eclectic as “Naked Love” wouldn’t be able to find a place in the hierarchy of smart, focused alternative pop. 

I will say that I noticed something oddly gothic about the main harmony in this song as it unfolds to us in the chorus, but I don’t look at this element as a purely cosmetic feature that was included simply to magnify the cryptic feel of the lyricism. Actually, I think it genuinely accentuates the passion of the words and makes the music sound even more authentic than it already would have, and if this was the ultimate goal, I don’t see anything wrong with this kind of an unconventionality making its way into the fold. 

There is a lot of really interesting and anti-mainstream content coming out of the international underground in 2020, but I do not believe that you’re likely to hear anything quite like the sound The Orange Apples. have created in the new single “Naked Love,” nor the foundations of its video as they’re presented to us here. “Naked Love” is an ethereal but coldly cerebral power ballad of minimalistic ideals (compositionally speaking, that is), and while it’s tailored for more of a niche audience than the casual pop consumer, it’s one of my new favorite tracks of the fall season in 2020 without a doubt. 

 Mindy McCall

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