Glints 28 Days: A fascinatingly disturbing insight into the whole gamut of lockdown emotions.
“Face mask on, matching rubber gloves like I’m way too fashion – frustration. No I’m not doing too well”.
Probably the most accurate summary of lockdown life, Glints’ latest release 28 Days presents a sharp and poignant depiction of the emotional turmoil of isolation. The mixtape is cinematic in every sense of the word: a continuous flow of music brimming with film references, accompanied by a video by Glen Schrijverys and Iljen Put.
Glints plunges the listener into an intense and noisy sound world in track one itsafuckinglockdown, inspired by UK Grime instrumentals to depict the suffocating cabin fever of quarantine. The accompanying video’s vivid colour scheme of blue, red, black and white immerses the listener in an inescapable synaesthetic nightmare, while the perpetual recurrence of a rippling, moustached smiley face in the video becomes weirdly comforting throughout this unpredictable journey. Glints’ unique lyricism combines humour and anxiety in close proximity. The opening track sounds like the introduction to some sort of comedy dystopian musical until you realise that lines such as “Friends and family are a luxury” disguised behind a fast BPM convey the sinister reality of our new normal.
The mixtape also touches on serious themes such as mental health. Diary of a Hypochondriac notes the anxiety of going to the shops and realizing “left my sanitizer at home, I might well cry” – again funny, but tragically relatable. A more nauseated tone pervades Populist Puppet with the triplet flow, queasy cross-rhythms and spinning visuals creating a whirlwind of dysphoria. Even more disturbingly, the only moment of sonic and rhythmic calm is during a sample of Donald Trump’s bizarre speech suggesting to inject bleach to cure the virus: a chilling reminder of how little we can rely on the comfort of strong leadership.
The latter half of the mixtape takes a more melancholy tone, with L.I.T.O.C (love in times of corona) offering a pensive reflection on the difficulties of maintaining a relationship in lockdown when “visiting you is considered a crime”. The sparsely textured final track Outside featuring Fivez leaves a vulnerable question mark hanging over our heads: how much longer will this be our reality and for how much longer can we stomach it? These are hard-hitting questions, but the acknowledgement of these sentiments is refreshing as it can feel hard to discuss the mental health crisis accompanying this pandemic when so many are losing their loved ones.
28 days is a powerful gesamtkunstwerk that offers a frank and stark insight into isolation emotions. It’s funny, yet disturbing to imagine that one day it might be used to teach our children coronavirus history.