New Nina Diaz Single Leaves Us Drooling For More

Dear Nina,

Stop making us beg.

It feels like it’s been a year since your album was “cooked,” but you sure did make us wait.

The album, the solo debut by the Girl in a Coma singer, will finally be released on October 28 via Cosmica Artists, but she's been kind enough to tease us with two gems so far: “January 9th,” a power ballad first streamed by Paper mag, and the monumental, striking video of “Trick Candle,” now available on YouTube after premiering on Fuse.

The video was directed by Jim Mendiola (with help from Ray Santisteban) in a radical departure from his previous work. Mendiola was even surprised when I congratulated him for it. “How did you know I made it?” he asked. “I was trying to keep it on the down-low. It’s not a video I would normally make,” he said.

Thank God for that: Nothing worse than watching a video and saying, “Oh, this must be Mendiola’s.” Or whomever’s. I want my directors to surprise me, and “Trick Candle” (filmed at Gravelmouth Gallery) is the exact opposite of Mendiola’s black and white, minimalistic Pretty Vacant (1996).

“A lot of Nina’s friends got together to support her vision,” Mendiola said. “People like Shek from Gravelmouth Gallery and artist Larry Servin … I wouldn’t normally shoot a dance video, but it turned out to be fun. We just wanted her to look good.”

Not a hard thing to do. In the video, Nina is equal parts Selena and a hungry lion ready to jump out of the screen and eat your neck. It is her sexiest video yet and a reminder that she has it all: the voice, the looks and (judging by the two singles) the songs, all penned by her. Having a great band behind her doesn’t hurt either: Travis Vela on guitar, Austin Valentine on bass, Johnny Shrink on keyboards and Jorge Gonzalez on drums.

Next stops for Nina: 9/10 in San Marcos (at SMTX Pride) and San Antonio (at Mission Pachanga), 9/17 in Albuquerque, NM (Sandia Casino, opening for Cyndi Lauper), 9/23 in Houston (Fitzgerald’s) and 9/24 in New York (The Studio at Webster Hall).


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