Life After Salem
In 2021, Lil Nas X released his debut album MONTERO, and he invited us to create official visualizers for two new songs. In my opinion, the most powerful song in Lil Nas X's first album "MONTERO" is the second to last song, "Life After Salem", which also happens to be the most surprising. Lil Nas X incorporates the metal rock style of the last century, making it impossible for people not to rock and hum along with this memorable and catchy song.
As the lead designer for this project, I captured some of the emotions you experienced when you first heard this song. This track captures the feeling of helplessness and the desire to burst forth from silence. I used a liminal space approach to take you into a back room, much like a subway station, to express the complex and intertwined emotions within his heart. Just like the entire film is on a loop, you can see the scenes as endlessly generating, much like the endless cycle of struggles in his mind. At the same time, the subway can also be a bridge to the outside world, implying that Lil Nas X will eventually grow a tough shell to withstand all external attacks.
And what he wants to express in this song is not just about love and affection, but it's more like a challenge to everyone. "What you want from me?" Yes, what do you want from me? I have nothing left to lose, and I don't care about all your attacks. Perhaps "MONTERO" is just a dream for him, where he boldly expresses his desires. Maybe reality is the dream, and he hopes to wake up and be recognized by the public.
Selected some of my favorite moment during the production of Life After Salem.
Client：Lil Nas X
Art Director / Lead Designer：Zuheng Yin
Designer / Animator：Chanyu Chen
Graphic Design / Type：Min Kim