by Walter Price
It’s not an anthem per se, yet the empowering recent single “help!”, by LA-songwriter Lani Renaldo certainly could wear the moniker with pride. It’s believed by many experts that anxiety, depression, and paranoia are at an all-time high and it makes sense really. A pandemic, racial inequality, police/political turmoil, gender identity debates… Well, you can pick and choose from a pile of extraordinary circumstances and situations that have all melded into one giant ball of confusion of late. And feeling lost in it all can feel devastating.
“Selfishly, the song was written from a place of just feeling like I was spiraling. I didn’t feel like myself, I wasn’t on medication, I was going through really big changes in terms of my gender and identity and now trying to figure out who I was outside of a relationship. It was really tough. I forced myself to sit down one day and write about how I was feeling.”, the songwriter bravely remembers. Although “help!” was written from personal experiences for Renaldo, every one of us has cried out, begging for some comfort and brief relief. So, yes, this song will resonate with so many and I expect it will anchor many why-can’t-nobody-hear-me-screaming-for-help! playlists.
Directed by Josh Weiner, the music video is an all too authentic look at what isolation can feel like. Alone in a single room apartment, pacing, sinking into the sofa, venturing into the safety of the darkness of night and those lil moments of fuck this, I’m in control, only to be brought back down a peg or two. A vicious cycle all played out in 3:55.
If you’re a fan of the low-slung real-life vibes of Pom Pom Squad, Billie Eilish, and/or Fenne Lily then “help!” will fill your earbuds brilliantly. But more importantly, let this track remind you that you’re not alone in all of this. Sometimes, a simple phone call can make a world of difference.
LANI RENALDO help!
Artist photo and quotes courtesy of Laura V
Written/performed by Lani Renaldo
Music Video: Directed by Josh Weiner
Producers – Jake Orlin, Drew Tabor
Colorist – Zach Chalmers
“I think I’ve always been this person but it was coming to terms with that and allowing people to see those parts of myself. I was becoming comfortable with my identity and expression. There was a sense of just feeling unapologetic especially within the songs. And I think I didn’t want to feel bad for myself, I wanted to feel empowered by the fact that I was learning how to deal with my emotions for the first time.” – L. Renaldo