Black Nash shares a “submerged” love song

Black Nash press photo
Photo credit: Johnny Lutz

Black Nash is sharing a special love song off his upcoming self-titled album, out February 26th via Ramp Local. Love Underwater is a story song like no other.

The third single lifted from Black Nash’s upcoming self-titled LP, it opens with a startling admission: “Love underwater is not what I thought it’d be,” sings Jody Smith, “they took dolphins and force-fed them ecstasy.” Things only get stranger from there, as Smith walks through an oddly affecting landscape where people drain their bank accounts to buy up lakefront and “huff carbon dioxide to train their lungs”.

“I just thought the title was really pretty,” says Smith when asked about the song’s inspiration. Who knows where the rest came from. Just in time for Valentine’s Day, you can listen to Love Underwater via Bandcamp below.

More about ‘Black Nash’?

When Jody Smith got out of the military at the end of 2019, the last thing on his mind  was releasing an album. He had just finished five years in the Army, and his main goal was getting on his feet as a civilian. “I basically fell flat on my face,” says Smith. “Which I think is a pretty typical experience for guys getting out. The civilian world is a whole different animal. Different work, different people, different lifestyle.” 

The pandemic made the transition even harder. Finding himself out of work and stuck at home, Smith decided to record an album under the name Black Nash, which he’d been using casually for home-recording projects throughout his time in the Army. 

The resulting self-titled LP is a taut, focused tour de force. Performed and recorded by Smith himself (with support on drums from friends in Florida and Nashville), ‘Black Nash’ is a 25-minute blast of claustrophobic energy, driving from guitar-heavy climax and restless soliloquies. The songs rarely last more than three minutes. The feelings of restlessness are universal. 

“I was totally isolated while I was recording,” says Smith, “and I already didn’t know anybody where I was living before COVID hit, so the album ended up sounding like quarantine, to me, at least.” In songs like Alligator and 4 I.O. Smith excoriates a nameless “you,”  dripping with disdain and anger. On Love Underwater he navigates a surreal cultish landscape: “Love underwater is not what I thought it’d be / They took dolphins and force-fed  them ecstasy.” Throughout, the music bristles with force and tension. Limiting himself to the  format of a conventional four-piece rock band-—each track features only one vocal track, two guitar tracks, bass, and drums—Smith has constructed musical environments that are  both completely airless and full of open space.

Smith, now living in New York City, is circumspect about connecting the album to his biography. “I’m a happy dude,”  he says. “I don’t think this album reflects who I am all the time, and it’s definitely not any  kind of commentary on my experience in the military. Who wouldn’t be a little wound up this  year?” One thing is clear: “Black Nash” is music for 2021. 

‘Black Nash’ album details
Black Nash cover artwork

Black Nash’ track listing

1. Alligator
2. Zodiac
3. No Idea
4. Burn My Body Down
5. White Out
6. On The Line
7. Love Underwater
8. 4 I.O.
9. Minute of Rage
10. It’s You

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