If you haven’t already spotted him on various Spotify curated playlists, 22-year-old TRACES, also known as Tim Dehnert, is the singer songwriter poised to cause big ripples in the alternative scene. Based in Los Angeles, TRACES already boasts over fifteen million combined Spotify and Apple music streams prior to the release of any fully-fledged album. At the core of his inevitable fast approaching success is an ability to interweave genre characteristics, for example his Sleeping At Last-esque atmospheric cover of Radiohead’s ‘High and Dry’. With a back catalogue combining elements of electronica, RnB, pop and hip-hop, it’s not difficult to see why he’s been heralded as having “the exact pursuit of greatness that a rising artist should aspire for”.
‘Silver Lines’ is TRACES’ latest release, and is the second single put out in the run-up to his debut album, 6 HRS. The track is, for lack of a better description, like putting on X-ray vision goggles and staring into Dehnert’s psyche, centred on the anxiety around the seemingly inevitable impending doom of romantic relationships. Lyrics such as the repeated “Don’t know how to be myself around you” emphasise the obsessive overthinking and analysis that all too often comes as a part of the ‘being in love’ package. Yet there is also a somewhat charming self-awareness in the recognition of “Maybe I lost some self-importance”, making a refreshing change to the all-too-familiar whirlpools of self-pity that make up so many tracks of this calibre. What’s most refreshing, however, is Dehnert’s total submission to his loss of control, welcoming this stage of being in love despite all the pain it inflicts.
Dehnert’s introspective lyrics are paired to a beat pulsating with the anxiety of a person in love on the edge. Showcasing his impressive vocal range by beginning with smooth low tones that eventually rise to a strong, almost haunting falsetto, TRACES is not afraid to show that he’s a force to be reckoned with.
TRACES’ debut album, 6 HRS, is set to be a concept-driven work, taking place over a six-hour sleep cycle, where he promises to deal with demons that are “universally pondered, but rarely discussed in popular music”. If that doesn’t appeal to the inherent curiosity within all of us, I’m not sure what will.
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Image courtesy of Chad Saechao.