Will Swinton, a New Zealand-born alternative artist, recently released “Go Wrong”, an intricately crafted single about the lowest point in a breakup. Swinton is incredibly meticulous in his choices, the mark of a self-starting artist whose product far overshadows his resources. In his latest post about his song, the artist and his friends are shown bellowing along to his lyrics, co-signing the single and celebrating the release.
“Go Wrong” starts with a sickly sweet, high-pitched electric guitar imparting a beachy, nearly tropical sound onto the track. Swinton contrasts the guitar with a tight, 70s drumbeat and the lower registers of his raspy voice. The lyrics are simple but effective, and Swinton’s knack for creating a killer melody is apparent as he sings “tell me where the hell did I go wrong,” a line that is so catchy it could get stuck in the listener’s head after one listen. Will Swinton is creating a brand of slow, sad music but “Go Wrong” might be his most post-depressive, emotive song yet — and his self-indulgence in sadness and ability to give himself over to the music is captivating.
Comparing a multi-faceted artist like Will Swinton to only one artist is nearly impossible. He’s a comedian for Gen Z, and has amassed a large TikTok following (not dissimilar to the antics of Joji, who got his start as a Youtube comedian while also making incredibly emotive music). Lil Nas X is another artist who used Twitter to self-promote, and the blueprint he’s laid down for the artists after him requires a sense of humor, self-awareness, and personal branding that Will Swinton seems to embody for himself. Sonically, the hip-hop, sob-rock adjacent musician sounds like an inventive understudy for the likes of Post Malone, Iann Dior, and The Kid LAROI (he could even be mistaken for The Kid LAROI on first glance).
Swinton takes perfection and detail seriously in his music. The cover of “Go Wrong” is a black and white mixed media mashup of his body, showcasing underwear with his namesake and his Scooby Doo tattoo (a tiny bit of silliness to a very serious moment). Swinton’s music videos are incredibly well-executed, focusing on lighting, imagery and some dancing. The artist’s attention to detail and ability to express himself without a huge creative team is massively impressive, and a hallmark of a modern-day music marketing genius. What exciting thing Will Swinton does next is entirely up to him, and the musician seems to be in complete control of his creative output.