“I never really write happy songs about being in love, they just don’t seem to come that naturally for me,” Chinwe told American Songwriter. “This isn’t that, but it’s probably the closest I’ve come.”
Chinwe is an up-and-coming London-based soul artist, and the “this” that she’s talking about is her dreamy new single “Intoxicated,” which dropped on August 19. As alluded to, the song is a quasi-exploration of love, but done through a tasteful lens of introspection and complexity.
“When the pandemic hit, I think the lack of social interaction made me turn inwards,” Chinwe said. “I was desperate to reclaim happier times, trying to reach them and reimagine them in a way that they could become almost tangible, like a lucid dream. In this sense, the song is really more about escapism than it is being in love. It’s that feeling of yearning and longing for a different reality that then leads to infatuation — whether it be with an individual, a high or a time and place.”
In terms of style, the song is a perfect demonstration of the nuanced growth of “chill vibes” in the music world. That is to say, from the wobbly synth pads to the washed-out guitar lines to the booming bass to Chinwe’s intoxicating vocal delivery — listening to this song kinda feels like floating off into a dreamy fantasy. Perhaps this impeccable vibe was the result of the deliberation Chinwe used when crafting the beat.
“I recorded this song by myself at a friend’s studio during lockdown,” she said. “I had made the beat on my laptop in Logic last year and tried to write to it back then but couldn’t come up with anything that I particularly liked. So, it was just sitting there. I guess isolation allowed me to go back and rediscover it — see it with new eyes.”
Ultimately, Chinwe’s goal is to create a world that listeners can step into. “I hope this song can transport people away from their reality and any negativity they’re experiencing, even if only for a few minutes,” she said. “I want the listener to escape with me and come on a journey to a happier time and place.”
Listen to “Intoxicated” by Chinwe below: