Conan Gray is making watching music videos cool again. From slick dance moves to perfectly timed floor slidings to… Perhaps I should talk about the song first and spend as much time as I fancy talking about the music video later. Okay, “Lonely Dancers” – the catchy anthem for recently single people. Gray has proven that he knows how to make good use of his natural vocal range, and he expertly did so again in “Lonely Dancers.”
Gray sings his way through an upbeat song about how heartbreak can bring two people together. “Your lover left you, broke up tonight / My lover’s busy kissin’ other guys, oh / We’re both alone now, tears in our eyes / I know the perfect way to waste our time.”
Co-produced with the help of industry veteran Max Martin, ILYA, and Oscar Holter, Gray powers through the eighties synth-infused pop song, singing about heartache in a way that blends sadness with a sense of moving forward. Three days before the release of the single, Gray teased his third album Found Heaven, which he says was inspired by a particularly hard breakup.
“It did not end well,” Gray said of the album during his recent appearance on the Zach Sang Show. “There was a massive relief in that I could feel those things and that’s also why I named it Found Heaven. That’s a very happy thing… but also it killed me and I died.”
“You learn a lot. It was simultaneously the most incredible experience in my life and I wouldn’t change it for anything, but it was so fucking gut-wrenching,” he added. “It was horrible, but it was worth it.”
I’m guessing “Lonely Dancers” will be in the “happier version of sad” section of the album. The beautiful thing about the song is that Gray rarely delved deep into his pain, but he readily sings of his “lonely” partner’s pain, “Wait, stop, forget that guy / He don’t know love, I hope he dies / Get (Get) back (Back) up (Up), we’ll be alright.” I think it’s a way of showing how one’s pains and sorrows can dwindle and lose much of their weight in the presence of another person.
Like I said previously, the accompanying music video did more than just complement the song. In fact, I do believe you can love the music video even if you don’t vibe with the song. The video’s likability did not rest on any one thing, since a lot of disparate parts worked to make it what it is.