Watch the Melancholy Trip Hop Noir of Ryder Houston’s Video for “Total Reciprocity”

In a room that had seen more apologies than a confession booth, he sat alone, nursing his second bottle of two-buck chuck. The joint was one of those dime-a-dozen flophouses with a neon sign out front that buzzed like a trapped fly, promising “luxury” to anyone who hadn’t been around the block enough to know better.

He’d laid out rose petals on the bed, a touch of class that felt as out of place as a nun in a gin joint. The petals were supposed to spell romance, but now they just looked like evidence at a crime scene – where the victim was his own heart. The bottles on the table were halfway to nowhere, just like him. He’d come here with a pocket full of dreams, a head full of sweet nothings, and a saucy swatch of leopard-print, but as the night dragged on, those fleeting fancies faded.

He kept glancing at the door; clutching the phone; but it remained as still and silent as a tombstone. The realization hit him like a left hook from a heavyweight—tonight, the only thing he’d be spooning with…was his own disillusionment.

With every sip, the room spun a little faster, a carousel ride with no brass ring in sight. The rose petals, once a symbol of lustful passion, now just mocked him with their soft, wilted edges, a reminder of what could have been, but wasn’t.

In this city, a guy could get lost between the cracks of the sidewalks, and tonight, he felt about as significant as a raindrop in a downpour. The only thing left to do was pour another glass of cheap champers and let the night swallow him whole, another lonely soul adrift in the neon-lit canyons of despair.

Watch the video for “Total Reciprocity” below:

Ryder Houston’s Total Reciprocity single and video is a masterwork in modern noir, merging downtempo vibes with raw trip-hop beats to forge a sound distinctly his own. His influence is palpable, infiltrating the discographies of top artists and challenging genre conventions, creating something entirely new. Within this innovative space, Houston conjures a blend of nostalgia and innovation.

The latest from Houston is a three-track EP, Total Reciprocity, which includes a haunting cover of I Never Dreamed Someone Like You Could Love Someone Like Me from the 1976 horror film Carrie, showcasing Houston’s skill in reinterpreting classic sounds for today’s audience. Total Reciprocity  is inspired by alternative artists like Ultra-era Depeche Mode, Garbage, and Nine Inch Nails, while the more electronic tracks owe their lush sound to downtempo artists like Massive Attack, Space, Portishead, and Sneaker Pimps.

Houston is set to embark on an East Coast tour, where he will captivate audiences with performances that rely on nothing more than his voice, in-ear monitors, and a special backing track mixer, proving his coolness is as much about his presence as it is about his music.

Order the Total Reciprocity EP here

Ryder Houston was born in a small Dallas suburb. At age 19, he released his first feature film, Rapture in Blue. Included on the original soundtrack composed by himself was the film’s haunting theme, Wine (A Sea Of Future), performed by artist Ariana Kelly, who he would continue to collaborate with on his upcoming album, Neither Wrath Nor Punishment.

Follow Ryder Houston:

Alice Teeple

Alice Teeple is a photographer, multidisciplinary artist, and writer. She is not in Tin Machine.

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