The world of hip hop and R&B has been experimenting with emo aesthetics a lot recently, from the sadly departed Lil Peep to Princess Nokia’s recent string of emo-inspired mixtapes, there’s a whole world of new school emo emerging. Rukhsana Merrise‘s new track doesn’t quite fit into that cannon but it’s certainly inspired by it. Titled ‘Die in Vain’ it’s a sweeping R&B ballad that draws from the same emotional well as Nokia and co’s recent work. A dreamy, orchestral instrumental runs through the whole track, adding a more ethereal feel to the track which is aided by the addition of some Death Cab for Cutie-esque guitars.
The accompanying music video, which we’re premiering on Notion today, flirts with emo aesthetics in the same way. Rukshanna Merrise wanders the grounds of an old house, flanked by bushes of roses and in places, covered by a veil. There’s an element of the afterlife running through the whole thing, with surreal nods to the track’s title appearing on the packaging of food and drink that appears throughout. As the video enters its final act, Kojey Radical appears across a woodland pond to deliver his guest verse. Performing in a blue suit, he appears pained and confused as he delivers lyrics that seem to ruminate on his legacy. Like the track itself the video for ‘Die in Vain’ uses the imagery of the afterlife to create a feeling of hope amidst the seeming despair of its subject. Watch/listen to ‘Die In Vain’ below.