There's No Telling

Album: Claptrap (2022)
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Songfacts®:

  • The "Barely Breathing" singer Duncan Sheik found himself working in musical theater in the '00s, composing music for productions like American Psycho and Spring Awakening. But when the pandemic shut down theaters in 2020, he found himself out of action, and like so many affected, did a lot of soul searching.

    All that plays out in "There's No Telling," released as a single from his eighth album, Claptrap. "I was in the middle of a spiritual crisis," he explained. "I just started experimenting - it was very unfocused, and I was almost starting over, learning how to put sounds together in some meaningful way. Once that came into focus, it was like, 'Oh, I'm gonna write a song about my journey into the world of non-duality,' as somebody who's trying to widen the aperture of ways of looking at being a contented, somewhat happy human being in the contemporary world. After I wrote that lyric, I wouldn't say it was easy, but at least there was a path - here's the essence of what this record is going to be about. Now let's go unpack the whole thing."
  • Sheik alludes to his dalliances with drugs in the lines:

    I did X, Y, and Z
    Mostly for free


    "X" here might refer to the drug ecstasy.

    Sheik, who sought treatment for alcohol abuse in 2011, makes it clear he's not seeking pity:

    Had a real field day
    And I still got away
    So don't cry for me, Argentina
    Now I dabble in repentance


    "Don't Cry For Me Argentina" is a song from the musical Evita.
  • The music video is comprised of interpretive dancing by Karla Puno Garcia and Morgan Marcell, both of whom are in the stage production of NOIR, which Duncan Sheik co-wrote.

    "I felt it was important for the protagonists of the video to be female as a counterbalance to the stereotypical male energy of the lyric," Sheik explained. "I especially love not having to be in my own music videos, so also a bonus!"

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