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Exclusive: Van Soest Debuts His Enchanting Music Video For “Violet”


Michael Van Soest, the singer/songwriter who performs as simply Van Soest, is a Music City transplant out to prove that there’s more depth to millennials than many believe meets the eye. Growing up inspired by introspective vocalists like Jeff Buckley, Radiohead’s Tom Yorke and Coldplay’s Chris Martin, he’s set out to make him mark on Nashville’s rapidly developing alt-pop scene by tapping into a depth that belies his age, focusing on themes of love, loss, doubt and fear, and the strange ways they combine. So far, it’s working like a charm, and though the singer has yet to release a full album, he’s already built an impressive following on social media and song-streaming sites Soundcloud and Spotify.Today, Elmore is premiering the music video for “Violet,” the opening track to his forthcoming independent debut, War Sleep, which comes out on June 24th. Van Soest wrote the track as an exploration of a universal struggle– wanting to make his mark and truly stand out– made all the more challenging in a city full of aspiring artists. On the track, which mixes an Americana leaning melody and guitar with a modern pop sensibility, he exposes his frustration with the Nashville social scene, where so often people resort to shallowness and conformity, rather than aspiring to find a deeper connection with themselves and others. “Me and my new friends, we all blend in,” he muses in a moody falsetto.

The track shows off the slick production value of Van Soest’s tracks, thanks in part to production by Joshua D. Niles, who worked with Jason Isbell. The enchanting video shows Van Soest exploring the beauty of nature, letting himself get lost in a deep wood. “We wanted to create a visual collision between individuality and conformity with this video,” Van Soest said of the video. “The idea that you can’t escape being a part of the world, but you can choose the way you interact with it.”

Watch the video for “Violet” below.

– Emilee Gorshe

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