Video Premiere: Hattie – 21st Century

Today, we are proud to premiere the new video from New York City based dream pop artist Hattie, aka Melissa Carter. The song ’21st Century’ is a delicately textured, scathing indictment of financial inequality and of coming of age in a system that’s stacked against you.

Inspired in part by politician Bernie Sanders’ progressive platform, Hattie weaves an all-too-relatable tale of being an artist who pursued higher education in the United States, only to now be strapped with insurmountable student loan debt.

“’21st Century’ was written while I was in graduate school,” she recalls. “Earlier that year, I had been going through home videos from my childhood for a project with my other band, Rosalind. I came across a video of my fifth-grade honours chorus performing a song called ‘We are the People of the 21st Century.’ I had this idea to take that sample and splice it with voicemails from student loan debt collectors and my bank. That became the intro to ’21st Century.’ From there, I wrote the rest of the song in the same key.”

For the video, which features performers Amber Reauchean Williams and Corey Jason Chrysler alongside Carter, Hattie enlisted cinematographer Emil Benjamin to execute a vision she had whilst making the song.

“As I was finishing composing ’21st Century’, I had this image of myself and a few other performers doing ’80s step aerobics while wearing matching tracksuits,” she tells us. “I held on to that idea for a while and after releasing the song in October, I brought the idea to Emil who happens to spend part of his time on a culinary mushroom farm in upstate New York. He loved the idea and ran with it.” 

Shot on location on Windridge Farm, the video intersperses both autobiographical and recognisable American cultural footage throughout the choreographed sequences. The images are striking alongside the song, which has a lyrical motif of ‘I was told I could follow my dreams…’. By the end of the song, the sentiment sounds more and more silly; you’re becoming increasingly fed up with the status quo right alongside Hattie. It all adds up to an irresistably inviting slice of indie-pop, securing Hattie’s rightful place as an artist to watch in 2024.

The fantastic single ’21st Century’ can be streamed/purchased on Hattie’s Bandcamp page. Keep your eyes peeled for more new music coming later this year.

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