- Words Darcy Culverhouse
Putting his twist on the alt-pop scene, Vietnamese artist, Kiey unravels ethereal track, ‘white boy i sat next to on the plane.’
At times, it requires a surreal encounter to assemble the missing pieces of a song. For rising alt-pop artist, Kiey, such an experience unfolded with his latest single, ‘white boy i sat next to on the plane.’ Having already crafted a catchy piano riff before a flight back home, he found himself uncertain about the precise direction of the melody. It wasn’t until he boarded the plane and observed a guy sitting across the aisle that he felt he had struck musical gold. Within a matter of days, the verses for the track were penned and soon enough the song was complete.
For Kiey his artistry is simple. First, nail down the subject matter and then the infectious melody will naturally follow. Treading the path of electro-pop, Kiey’s passion for music has always been teeming in the background of his pursuits. While attending the prestigious King’s College, his artistic prowess started to take shape. Releasing a slew of singles as well as unravelling a 12-track album in 2019, his artistic endeavours have seen him tap into his Vietnamese roots with tracks like, ‘Mê Cung,’ a mesmerising composition crafted in his native language.
Standing as a triple threat: singer, songwriter and producer, it’s no surprise that Kiey’s latest tune feels wholly complete. Guided by a delicate piano melody, Kiey’s velvety vocals gracefully weave through the composition, as an orchestral ballad is manifested. Harnessing unique chords and vocal harmonies, the rising artist skillfully utilises momentary processing to emphasise specific lines and create a dynamic listening experience like no other.
The single’s silky tones are further enhanced by the accompanying music video. Set against a backdrop of white space, contemporary dances move across the camera with sheer vulnerability and emotion, as the visuals take the song to greater heights, enveloping us in an otherworldly soundscape.
When speaking about the single, Kiey says, ”’white boy i sat next to on the plane”’(yes the title is that long) first came to me during many of my working trips to Sapa, Vietnam. I already had this addictive piano riff in my Google Drive that I kept playing over and over, thinking how to make a song over it,” before adding, “It wasn’t until when I was on a flight back to HCM, where I saw a beautiful guy sitting across the aisle that it dawned on me the idea of the song title! I quickly wrote the lyrics down over a couple of days and when it was finished, I was so excited because it came out exactly as I imagined it!”