CLIP Gives Us a Glimpse Inside on 'Hurt U'

CLIP Gives Us a Glimpse Inside on 'Hurt U'

by Justine Fisher

CLIP offers a peek inside her body and brain in the new visualizer for “HURT U.” The single comes off of her forthcoming debut EP, Perception, in anticipation of its September 8 release.

Taking you on a literal journey up her throat in the video released today, CLIP shows off her glittering insides and bares it all in the emotional single. In line with the rest of the soul-baring EP, “HURT U” shows CLIP’s “more vulnerable lover girl side while still being guarded.”

Her latest release follows “FALL BACK,” the first single from Perception. Along with the song’s otherworldly music video, which dropped earlier this month, “FALL BACK”’s unique beat reflects CLIP creating her own realm. CLIP said the transcendent single is the perfect teaser for the EP because it embodies her authentic self, regardless of how others perceive her.

For CLIP fans who have been waiting patiently since she went viral on SoundCloud in 2020, Perception has been a long time coming. After achieving overnight success with “Sad Bitch,” CLIP followed up the next year with the hit single “Calvin K.” Now with Rolling Loud New York and a “Heaven” by Marc Jacobs ad in her future, Perception is the up-and-coming artist's natural progression.

Evolving from her viral dance singles, CLIP is sharing a more mature side of herself in Perception. She spoke with PAPER to recount everything that went into her upcoming EP.

What is your vision behind Perception?

I wanted my listeners to get a grasp of what goes on in my head because I like to reflect my music in that way. It’s like my diary, and I feel like a lot of people my whole life have perceived me in various ways that aren't true to myself. This EP is a really good way of letting people in, and I hope that portrays and works.

In terms of writing, do you draw most of your inspiration from your life?

Every song I make, I go through a significant life experience and I kind of just channel that through my music. Whether it be regular, funny, silly stuff, or actual deep life experiences and lessons, I try my best to create a little story out of it. It helps me to go through life and channel it in healthy ways.

For Perception, what are the experiences and stories that you're trying to portray?

There are a lot of situations going on throughout the songs in my EP. They're very general. It's not like I'm just talking about my life. You really just have to listen and put yourself there in my shoes and you'll really get it once you hear the songs.

So many of your fans were waiting for the EP to drop. How does it feel that it's coming soon?

I’m really excited. It feels like it's not actually happening, so when it does happen, it's gonna be surreal. I really appreciate everyone waiting patiently and anticipating it. It keeps me going.

How do you feel like your music has evolved to now?

There's more depth in my songs. I'm better at storytelling. I like to storytell my life with my music, so it's more elaborately put together and it gives you more of a perception of my life, my mind, what I'm thinking and the emotions I feel in the moment.

How did you pick the title for Perception?

I'm just so used to everyone perceiving me in either a way that they want to or off of what they see on social media, etc. Especially with my music, a lot of my songs that got attention — well, I only have three songs on distribution platforms — are kind of silly, fun songs. But, I want people to know that I'm versatile and I make more than that. There's more to CLIP than just the little poppy, trendy songs.

With the reaction to FALL BACK’s release, do you feel like people are starting to see what you’re hoping to portray in Perception?

When I drop things, I let go. I don't have any expectations for reactions because I feel like that takes the fun out of it. I'm really happy that people fucked with it. “FALL BACK” is still a catchy, cutesy, fun song, but it still gives them a taste of “Oh, [she’s] about to drop something crazy.” I try not to expect anything when I drop things because I overthink everything, so I try not to.

With “FALL BACK” being the one cutesy song, what can we expect from the rest of the EP?

Each song is a key point in my life. When I would go to record, it's exactly what I was going through, and I just find a way to make an in-depth story about it, without giving away too much. It’s very natural for me. It just comes out. It's like word-vomit but with lyrics. I just structured my songs and the way I delivered it differently. Instead of it being fast, cute and catchy, you're getting a taste of what I'm seeing, what I'm feeling, what I'm going through. it's still dancey vibes and shit, but the lyrics are more mature.

Do you see making music and songwriting as an outlet?

It's definitely an outlet. A lot of the time, it's not even that I write the songs. It comes out on the mic. I just pour it out.

Can you talk about the inspiration behind the “FALL BACK” video and other upcoming visuals for the EP?

I dissociate a lot. I be in my own world. I like how, in “FALL BACK,” I created my own realm and I was just there, just doing me. That really embodied me because, taking it back to Perception, people perceive me in so many different types of ways. A lot of people think I'm this crazy, chaotic girl, but I'm really just to myself. I'm very reserved. I try to, with the visuals and everything, reflect my style and aesthetic. I like for everything to be literally me. I don't wanna portray something I'm not or seem some way I'm not. The little world is created with my visuals and shit. You can tell what type of person I am if you're really watching and understanding.

How has it felt to watch your popularity grow?

Every day it seems surreal. It feels like this is not my life. Every time I see numbers growing and more people finding out about me and fucking with me I get, not overwhelmed, but like, “Whoa is this real?” Every day I'm really grateful and honored that people like me enough and think I'm talented enough to support me, so that's really cool. I don't think I'll ever get used to it honestly, but it does feel really nice. It's really sweet.

Did you always see yourself getting to where you are now with your career, say, five years ago?

No. I was in school to be a journalist. I never thought I would be making music. Freshman year of college, I blew up. It was crazy. I'm grateful. The universe works in crazy ways. That's all I can say.

How did you get started with making music?

I had an iPod, and I would make covers on GarageBand on it, and I would upload them to SoundCloud. This singer Cuco was blowing up at the time because he had a hit single. I think it was “Lover Is A Day.” He reposted one of my covers on Twitter and all his fans flocked to it. It gave me a little bit of SoundCloud traction. It honestly made me overwhelmed so I stopped posting on SoundCloud, which is crazy. But, then like a year and a half or two later, I was alone and I was really going through it at the time and I had nothing. Life was just shitty. I had to drop out of school because there was money shit. I wasn't homeless, but I didn't have a stable place to call home. Life was chaotic and I felt like I was losing control. The only thing that I knew best to help me chill out was music because it is an outlet. I got on GarageBand and I made “Sad B!tch” for fun because I was sad. I was like, “Fuck it. I better switch it up.” When I finished it and then dropped it, it was like 1 a.m. I went to sleep, woke up, and so many people started making videos with it. It got a thousand likes overnight, which is crazy because I didn't have any relevance, and then it was a chain reaction. Every day just got bigger and bigger.

How was your headspace then different from when you were writing Perception?

It was definitely better because I'm in a better life situation thankfully. At the same time, I can't really compare the two because I still go through things and go through life, like regular human shit. I definitely am more mature and level-headed. I found that it's easier for me to actually put my thoughts and emotions down in the right way, which is also bringing back to why these songs on Perception are more mature and in-depth. I've grown up, and I'm able to communicate better.

What does the future look like for you music-wise?

I want me and everyone I love and care about happy and successful, whether that be with music or whatever. I hope this opportunity that I got in this music career is a very successful and long one because I'm really grateful and fortunate that my life is in this direction. I'm gonna keep doing me and keep making shit that I resonate with and that people that relate to me resonate with too. That was a big thing I always had an issue with. I always felt so isolated and alone growing up. That's why I think it's really beautiful that my fans and supporters like me so much because the things that I say and the stories I tell resonate with them in certain ways and they feel connected with someone. Even though they don't know me, they feel like they do. I think that's beautiful because I don't feel alone because I have all these people that can agree with me and understand what it's like to experience some things. I hope for the best. Whether I get a thousand streams on my EP or a million, I don't really care. I'm happy that at least one person is listening to it. I'm just doing me at the same time and I'm having fun.

Why do you think people relate to your music?

I think just because I'm real. I don't try to talk about shit that everyone else is talking about or try to be someone I'm not, or create fake narratives and scenarios. I'm just real about shit and people can just connect with that. No one's ever really alone. I used to always think that too. I used to think I was the only one going through shit. I would be so dramatic. I'd be like, “Oh my God! Woe is me! I'm the only one suffering,” but I’m not.

How did you get to a place of being authentic?

I'm from New York and I had to go to Texas for a minute in my life, and I just felt so out of place. I had two options: I could try to fit in and be like these people, or I could be myself. I chose to be myself. It helps because I have anxiety so I'm okay with being isolated. I was always authentic to myself from a very early age because everyone around me was always trying to change me and mold me into someone I'm not. I always knew that was wrong, and I knew I was special — not in an egotistical way — I just knew that the way I felt inside meant something. I felt like I was meant for more than my surroundings and environment. I always tried to stay myself and stay true to myself because I knew that it would pay off, and I guess it is. I try to stick to that as much as I can because all you have is yourself really. If you lose yourself, then what do you have?

Photography: Coughs