NYC-based multi-instrumentalist Nick Vivid loves creating music without following the trends. His love for glam rock, funk, hip-hop, disco, and lo-fi electronic music leads him to experiment with sounds that result in an immersive listening adventure. Nick will release his new studio album No More Secrets this Friday. The record includes nine tracks and showcases the artist’s passion for his craft.
Vivid will also celebrate with a release show this Saturday at the All Night Skate bar on Rockaway Avenue, Brooklyn. As a precursor to the show, Nick released a music video for “Trainers.” The video was filmed in a blackout room in Queens, and it was inspired by old Beat-Club TV shows from the early ’70s where bands performed in front of a blue screen.
As a single, “Trainers” is an upbeat track that will make you want to get up and dance, and it will surely be stuck in your mind for days. The lyric video for “Trainers” is also worth a watch. The name of the track comes from the video game term for cheat mode, and the lyric video is based on the C64 8-bit style.
Truly, Nick Vivid is an artist everyone must be listening to, and his outstanding work reflects the essence of what a musician should be. Soundigest had the pleasure to interview Nick, where he offered insight into the creation of No More Secrets. Check out our interview below and make sure to listen to No More Secrets this Friday!
Who and what were your main influences for the creation of No More Secrets?
Both of my parents passed away since the release of my last album, Blissed Out. I was able to look at my relationship with them more objectively. Family secrets didn’t have to be kept. Appearances for the sake of protecting others didn’t need to be kept. There was freedom in telling the truth about who I am and where I come from. Add in the powerlessness that the pandemic brought on, and you kinda create a person with nothing to lose. No More Secrets. That kinda said what the album was about for me.
What’s your favorite track on the album and why?
“Blackmail.” It’s about my dad’s empty threats to me when growing up. I lived most of my childhood in complete fear. I realize now how little control he, and others — the church, kids at school — had over me emotionally. If I knew then what I know now… but that’s alright. Gives me something to write about, doesn’t it?
The album is very sonically cohesive and very relaxing. What’s your favorite part of the production process?
Thank you! That’s a good question. I think getting a sound that really strikes a nerve in me is always a big moment. If I get something that makes me “feel” a certain way — that hint of magic. Sometimes it happens while writing, sometimes while recording, and sometimes while mixing. I always hope those moments show up, and when they do, it gives me enough energy to keep going.
Do you think the final result of the album would’ve been different had lockdown not happened?
Yes, it would have. I started writing and recording the album about a month before the pandemic, so the original idea was to push it forward for a September 2020 release and get back on the road. With the pandemic, I allowed the album to find itself. Some days nothing happened in the studio, and I didn’t let that bother me this time around. Sure, there were slight fears that maybe the album wouldn’t be as good if I didn’t have that “pressure” of a due date in the process, but as it turns out, it was better as a result of the space that I gave it to grow, so that was a good lesson for me.
What made you choose “No More Secrets” as the title track?
It was the album title. I normally don’t have title tracks, but for some reason this one does. I actually forget why it seemed so important for me to have a song called “No More Secrets” on the album. It just felt like there was supposed to be one.
What do you expect people to take from No More Secrets?
That relaxing vibe you mentioned. It felt appropriate for this album’s intent to be comforting. Something that feels good and gives a sense of hope, enlightenment, and empowerment. It’s confident without being boastful. Hopefully, people will feel the same way after listening.
What should the audience expect for the album release show?
Me reaching further than I’m capable of. I always try to push for a little more than my abilities. I hope I leave everything on the stage and sleep well that night after the gig knowing I did everything I could do up there.
Do you ever get writer’s block? How do you cope with it?
I am rarely the kind of person who sits with the guitar and says “OK. I’m going to write a song now.” When ideas come, they come. I don’t stress about it. They sometimes happen in waves of several ideas and then nothing for three months. I’m still able to put out a new album every two years, and I’m appreciative that they happen as often as they do.
What songs by other artists have you been listening to lately?
I’ve been on a late ’70s / early ’80s post-punk-new-wave kick lately. Suicide, Berlin-era David Bowie and Iggy Pop, Pylon, that kind of stuff.
Can you describe No More Secrets in four words?
Freedom From All Fear.
What is the biggest lesson you have learned working in the music scene?
If I have ideas that don’t seem to reflect rules, standards, or practices, that usually means I’m probably onto something. There’s a lot of artistic peer pressure out there — rules of writing, style, recording techniques. It’s all a lie. In reality, no one, including myself, has the slightest clue. So, yeah, I’ve learned to be wary of anyone who claims to be an expert or claims to have any or all of the answers. There are no answers.
Do you have any piece of advice for aspiring musicians out there?
Do what makes you happy today. If tomorrow you change your mind and decide something else will make you happy, start doing that instead.
Featured Image: Geoff Hug