The third single from The Awakening’s This Alchemy, Shadow Call, released as a stunning new video.
Lead singer and lyricist for The Awakening, Ashton Nyte, has been a busy young man. Right before the Covid epidemic in 2018, Ashton collaborated with Human Drama’s guitarist and Schecter Guitar’s president Michael Ciravolo on a few songs for his project called Beauty in Chaos. In that same year, he released an album with The Awakening called Chasm. In 2020, Mr. Nyte released a solo album called Waiting for a Voice with an accompanying book of beautiful writings and poems. Then, in 2021, presumably because Ashton is a fount of inspiration and hates down time, he released another record with The Awakening, the band’s 10th.
Shadow Call is the third single off the record. Ashton Nyte describes Shadow Call this way, “The song and video are essentially about dealing with depression and other forms of mental illness. I believe that if we feel safe enough to speak about these challenges, we have a better chance to cope with them and hopefully overcome them.”
The video is black and white with stunning composition. In light of Nyte’s description of the song, the video creates a world in which a person is trapped. The band is goth, the music dark and the castle sets the tone. With visual sweeps of the misty landscapes and a birds eye entry into the castle (for lack of a better term), we begin the journey of the mind.
The castle is a metaphor for the mind. Nyte, here ,is the protagonist and locked in the castle. His straight jacket and barbed wire surrounding the outer walls ensure there is no doubt. Within the walls are demonic like figures wearing masks and we travel through dilapidated tunnels leaking water. There is a sense of foreboding oozing from every frame of the video.
Nyte plays chess with a mysterious figure in black. Life, like chess, requires making the right moves. Here we get a sense of Nyte playing for his life. From there cuts between a locked prison door with a small eye view port and Nyte singing the lyrics- the mind can truly be a prison. We get a really cool, worms eye view of a corridor within the castle. It’s outside, but it’s a steep, windows adorn the walls, yet it is seemingly an insurmountable obstacle.
The video continues with dark imagery. A light, signifying hope, fizzles out and explodes. There are people in water reaching and splashing. As we see cuts of Ashton singing and playing guitar, we return to the character and chess. He removes the mask……it’s Ashton Nyte.
Again, another beautiful metaphor that we can be our worst enemy. We can work against ourselves in our fight to recover. Nyte, here, alone has little chance. His point is that being trapped in your own mind can be insurmountable on your own. Mental health requires help.
This song and video are beautifully haunting. More importantly, it’s art doing what art does best- expressing emotion and depicting the human condition in a way that makes it easy to confront. Simply stunning effort!
Check the video out here:
Not totally unrelated, there is another song that deals with mental health and uses a mansion as a metaphor. It’s by NF and called Mansion. It is completely different in terms of tone and genre, but equally powerful in message about mental health. You might check that one out.
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