“Bed of Nails”

James Siewart (2019 2019, runtime: 5 mins 15 sec)

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Slideshow  |  Trailer

Music Video Directed by James Siewert for Johanna Warren


Stereogum

Keely Quinlan 02/11/2020

The last we heard from the Portland singer-songwriter Johanna Warren was in 2018, with the release of her great Gemini II. Now, the multi-instrumentalist and producer is about to return with another album, her first since signing with Wax Nine/Carpark Records. She produced it herself, and it’s called Chaotic Good.

“I’ve been thinking of life as one big roleplaying game,” Warren said of the album’s title, a reference to Dungeons & Dragons’ alignment system (which has also become a meme in recent times). “There’s chance, there’s choice, and there’s alignment — what forces in the universe do I choose to align myself with?” She continued: “The last few years I’ve had an urge to change my name, or create some alter-ego. But I’ve come to realize that ‘Johanna’ is already just a character. We think we know who we are based on what’s already happened, but we’re allowed to make new choices.”

In a press release, Chaotic Good is described as “an exercise in self-reinvention.” It supposedly veers from spare piano confessions to more fleshed-out, grunge-leaning material. Having written it and recorded it in various studios all over the country while touring Gemini I and Gemini II, it became a real-time document of change and specific memories. “Chaotic Good is a metamorphosis,” Warren said. “It’s my phoenix moment. Everything I’ve done before was just building the funeral pyre.”

Along with the announcement, Warren shared a lead single called “Bed Of Nails.” In some ways, it recalls the introspective quality of Warren’s past work, with gentle keyboard notes and blue-hued guitars intertwining throughout. It builds up as it goes, strums and warm percussion bringing her to an emphatic yet morose conclusion. “Bed Of Nails” comes with a video, centering on themes of decay and growth.

opbmusic

Ray Gill Jr. 2/17/2020

The new single from Portland artist Johanna Warren, “Bed of Nails,” is an exercise in the power of a minimalist approach to creating a beautiful song. You can feel every stroke of the guitar as she elegantly hypnotizes you with the haunting power of her voice. Warren has self-produced her upcoming album, arriving just in time for the summer, so anticipate more of her wonderfully personal touch throughout.

Brooklyn Vegan

Brooklyn Vegan Staff 2/11/2020

Portland, OR folk singer Johanna Warren is back with her fifth LP, and follow-up to 2018’s Gemini II, Chaotic Good. It’s due out May 1 via Wax Nine/Carpark Records, and the first single is the beautifully melancholy “Bed of Nails.” “The chorus, ‘each day it’s a little harder to believe,’ has a sort of double meaning,” Johanna says. “Like, it can be hard to see the good in people and stay optimistic in a world that seems to be falling apart… but simultaneously we’re waking up and starting to question the lies, feeling the matrix of illusion loosening its grip, the old story losing its power.”



Executive Producer:
Larry Fessenden

Executive Producer:
Darryl Gariglio

Executive Producer:
Charles Siewert

Producer:
James Siewert

Producer:
Johanna Warren

Producer:
Leo Swartz

Assistant Director:
Leo Swartz

Assistant Camera:
Jesse LoCascio

Grip and Electric:
Ben Duff

Grip and Electric:
Abbey Killheffer

Art Department:
Wren Marie

Art Department:
Mondo Young

Visual Effects and Animation:
James Siewert

Visual Effects and Animation:
Auden Lincoln-Vogel

Visual Effects and Animation:
Ben Duff

Colorist:
Stephen Derluguian