Nick Vivid is a shape shifter and a hip shaker with a mind moving in multi-colored frames per second. On “Trainers,” a title pulled from the video game term for “cheat mode” as a metaphor for “unlimited lives” or extra chances to get things right, the New York City artist surveys limited thinking and setting one’s own limitations, a narrative positioning his fourth release No More Secrets (MegaPlatinum Records), out Nov. 12.
“Musically, there's a very fun, freeing, and quirky vibe to it,” says Vivid. “It's just powerful enough. It's just catchy enough. And it's just weird enough. I think that combination opens the door for everything that comes after. The song also has that uplift and positivity. I think the album as a whole is pretty optimistic.”
Filmed inside a blackout room in Queens, NY, the video, inspired by the German Beat-Club music television shows, which ran from the mid-‘60s through early 1970s, casts a psychedelic haze with Vivid dancing around funk- and soul-surged beats and a running commentary on renewal—I get to start all over anytime that I feel / This place has got some nerve to try and tell me / What is fake and what's real.
"I hadn't been on stage in a year and a half, so I was excited about making this video, which is just a classic-style performance video,” shares Vivid. “Even though there was no audience, I went for it as if there were… I wanted to make a video that was high energy from beginning to end. This will give people who haven't seen me in concert a little bit of an idea about the kind of show I put on."
Relocating from his hometown of Buffalo, NY to New York City, Vivid began working with former Billy Idol and KISS manager, Bill Aucoin, and started releasing his own music, completely DIY. A multi-instrumentalist, Vivid played all the instruments on the album, in addition to producing and engineering the release.
No More Secrets is resurrection following loss—Vivid lost both of his parents in the past several years—playing constant mind games, and beginning again. No More Secrets follows Vivid’s 2017 debut Nicksploitation and most recent Blissed Out in 2019 and opens a door to escape the norm, incessant worries, and go someplace new from the first single “Hush Money (Straight to Bribe)” addressing bullshit vs. honest, the empowering “We Can Ride,” reflections of the pandemic and self-sabotage on “I Wanna Reign Again” and “Ain’t Enough,” and starting over with a cleaner palette on “Blank Slate.”
“This is my mode of communication and connection with others on a visceral, raw, human level,” says Vivid of the album. “In person, I function somewhere between extremely introverted and extremely extroverted, but on my albums I can share openly about anything I'm feeling without the need for some special context. The music creates the set up.”
Vivid adds, “Someone choosing to listen to my albums or choosing to see me perform in concert is, in effect, giving me permission and trust to take them somewhere. I want to make good on that.”
Music is therapy. It’s escape. It’s healing and whatever one needs, but Vivid tries not to look behind the curtain too often.
“There's 12 notes, and how you use them can elicit all manner of responses,” says Vivid. “Part of me doesn't want to know why. I'd rather not risk losing that sense of magic about it.”