'Modern Loneliness': Lauv's new music video makes a powerful statement on mental health in these rough times
Singer-songwriter Lauv has released the music video for his anthemic single 'Modern Loneliness'.
Lauv defines the phrase 'modern loneliness' as referring to how alone we feel despite having plenty of friends and being surrounded by people. But for Lauv, it isn't just the feeling of loneliness that plagues him, it's also the fact that he does not take the time to get in touch with his friends or answer calls from his mom. As he states on 'Modern Loneliness', "Love my friends to death / But I never call and I never text 'em."
The singer-songwriter has spoken about battling depression before in songs such as 'Sad Forever' and 'Changes', and you can hear some of that reflected in 'Modern Loneliness' lyrics like, "I'm trying to find a reason to get up" or more directly in lines like "Modern loneliness, we're never alone / But always depressed."
Lauv told MTV News that 'Modern Loneliness' was a "super, super meaningful song" to him. In fact, he finds the song so meaningful that he got the phrase 'Modern Loneliness' tattooed on his arm. He added, "I feel like these days, I'm so used to never being alone but feeling so alone. It's so easy to feel totally isolated, even if there's people around you. I just think it's this condition that a lot of people in my generation feel."
He is certainly not wrong about that. 'Chronic loneliness' is a real issue in these times, one that some even refer to as a modern epidemic. Studies have even found that the absence of social connection has the potential to trigger the same primal alarm bells as hunger, thirst and physical pain. Another study found that nearly half of the Americans feel alone or left out, and over half of the people that participated in the study said they feel that nobody really knew them well.
And while this phenomenon was already being observed across the country and even in other parts of the world, it has become even more apparent throughout the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, which has people locked away inside their homes. People are now forced to face these feelings of loneliness as there's not much else to distract them from it. As Robin Wright of The New Yorker puts it, "...as the new pathogen forces us to socially distance, I have begun to feel lonely. I miss the ability to see, converse with, hug, or spend time with friends. Life seems shallower, more like survival than living."
To that end, Lauv's 'Modern Loneliness' is absolutely gutwrenching. It's a difficult reality to face but it is also one most of us can't help but empathize with and relate to. And the newly-released music video — which was directed by Jason Lester and filmed remotely while both him and Lauv were in quarantine — conveys the experience of modern loneliness, rather aptly, through the perspective of the singer's cell phone.
The song and video are a powerful commentary on society and our relationship with social media, and the feeling of being 'alone together', and it is so remarkably relevant to the times we find ourselves in. Even more so, considering the video was originally going to be shot in Los Angeles with over 100 fans being reunited with friends they had lost touch with. Lauv later sang duets with fans via social media so he could still include his fans from around the world in the video.
But it isn't all doom and gloom. The song and video pick up towards the end and show Lauv triumph over these demons, responding to messages from friends, singing with fans and answering his mom's call on FaceTime.
Stream or buy Lauv's music via his official website or Spotify. Follow Lauv on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram to stay up-to-date on his latest news and music.