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Egyptian-American Artist Katarya Releases Melancholic Single 'Time'

With evocative lyricism, emotive melodies and subtle piano undertones, the track sees the rising artist deftly manoeuvre the daunting reality of mental illness.

Riham Issa

Egyptian-American Artist Katarya Releases Melancholic Single 'Time'

Egyptian-American artist Katarya confronts the complex interplay of anxiety, helplessness and perfectionism in the latest introspective single ‘Time’.

With evocative lyricism, emotive melodies and subtle piano undertones, ‘Time’ sees Katarya deftly manoeuvring the daunting pressure of reality and the unattainable standards he imposed upon himself, all while grappling with his own mental illness. Inspired by a crucible experience rooted in his formative college years, the track serves as a form of self-rehabilitation for the rising artist, where he strives to decode the complexity of his emotions and understand the morale behind his struggles.

The self-taught singer, songwriter and producer opens the track with a soft crooning against the backdrop of a metronome-like ticking, setting a contemplative tone for a three-minute listen. As the song unfurls, the sound of the piano gradually recedes, making room for Katarya’s glitchy auto tuned vocals as he passionately delivers verses to mourn the loss of friendships and wasted time during his tumultuous episode of depression.

“I was working on a project and I was nowhere near meeting the deadline I set for myself… I was also trying to keep up with the unrealistic expectations I had, but my struggle with ADHD kept me from doing even the bare minimum, and I felt so frustrated,” Katarya shares with SceneNoise. “It was that moment of helplessness that inspired the song. A mixture of fear, helplessness and grief for my well being.”

In harmony with the introspective essence of the song, the accompanying music video, directed by Kareem El-Khadrawy from Void Films, captures Katarya’s sense of helplessness. In one scene, we see him slumped against the wall of a dark tunnel, followed by another where he runs aimlessly through a desolate desert or curls up in a fetal position on his bed. The video concludes with a promising denouement for those who find themselves ensnared in similar circumstances, in which he emerges from the cold tunnel and falls into the warm embrace of the light.

“It can be hard to open up to your loved ones about your anxiety and struggle to manage the pressures of life without being dismissed as lazy or weak,” Katarya says. “I hope that I was able to successfully express this struggle in both the song and the music video, so that people who are dealing with the same issue feel seen and realise they are not alone, just as I wish I had felt.”


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