Don’t like WURST’s ‘See Me Now’? Then you’re not listening properly

WURST’s ‘See Me Now‘ released today

When WURST (aka Austrian singer Conchita Wurst, aka Tom Neuwirth) puts out a new single, I scan the comments section of the YouTube video.

Not to read typical fan comments, which would still be “it’s a masterpiece” even if the song was the blandest junk ever released, but to find those few people that have something interesting to say — positive or negative.

Or that may have noticed something about the track I have not.

But when WURST’s ‘See Me Now‘ was released this morning, and I read one comment on the video (see box above), it made me want to point something out.

Something important about WURST and about his music, and not only to W Crash, the pseudonym of the person that commented, but to others that may not like ‘See Me Now‘ or any of the other new music WURST is in the process of releasing.

Because, let’s face it, ‘See Me Now‘ is far different than anything Tom Neuwirth put out as Conchita.

Intentionally. And there is a reason for that.

The watering down of Conchita and the appearance of WURST

Conchita warned for a long time before WURST appeared that the glamorous diva we loved was likely to disappear one day. Or at least, be replaced by a new character for a time.

So it shouldn’t have been much of a surprise when Conchita’s appearance at Opernball earlier in the year, completely bald and in a long evening gown, was quickly followed up by the appearance of WURST.

An artist far closer to Tom Neuwirth’s own physical appearance — but a harder, more abrasive, more steel-like version.

An artist some fans obviously feel uncomfortable with, while others, I get the feeling, may be supportive but still do not really understand where Neuwirth is going with his music and with WURST, or why.

And a direction I saw coming a couple of years ago, fought against for a while due to my own love of be-gowned and be-wigged Conchita, and then thought “What the fuck! Joining the fabulous ride this man is going on should be well worth the emotional upheaval, and the loss of that golden girl that is bound to come with it”.

Tom Neuwirth and what you might be missing

Because here’s the thing.

Look back on the last four years of Conchita interviews, think how she looked as time went on, and remember how she sounded.

Because it should have been obvious to anyone paying attention that, even though she was ecstatic to have won Eurovision, the year after her win was nothing more than a whirlwind of performances, photographs, interviews, and travel.

And with a crazy schedule that would have put a weaker human being in the hospital.

A schedule that was so intense it stopped her (him/Tom Neuwirth) from being able to pause and ask himself was this what he wanted? Was this artist the one he wished to be? Was this the career he always dreamed of?

A schedule that was so draining for so long, he eventually sat down one day and realized he was more unhappy than he had ever been. An unhappiness that led him to seek therapy in an attempt to figure out should he stop singing, go behind the camera, quit the entertainment world altogether?

Because no ‘success’ should come with that level of pain.

And if you don’t think Tom Neuwirth was floundering, lost and desperate to figure out how to get back on track, the opening question in a video of Conchita interviewing Hugh Jackman and Keala Settle in late 2017 should help you understand. (see video below)

Conchita — “I’m turning 30 next year, and I’m in a situation in my life where I question everything I am and all my talents, and I’m asking myself “Is this what makes me happy? Or is something else that I can actually do better than singing or whatever? And I wanted to ask you, have you ever been in this kind of situation and, if so, how did you manage to get back on track and find what makes you happy?

Because that was Conchita being given the chance to interview two of Hollywood’s biggest stars, and she turned it into a therapy session for Tom. He was that desperate for help.

WURST and his music make Tom Neuwirth happy — get on board or get out of his way

And now we come to WURST. Someone Conchita and Tom Neuwirth have been moving towards for the last two years. An artist and electro pop music Tom feels passionate about, and an artist and music that is allowing him to express how he feels.

You only have to listen to the lyrics of WURST’s first three releases to figure that out.

Trash All The Glam, is a statement of his intention to do what he wants, be who he is, regardless of what others think he should do and be:

“I have come here to be me in peace
But settings seemed to disagree
Views too dull, too obsolete, still succeed

Obstinately I proceed in constant need of poetry
To heal my broken dreams and give me light on gloomy streets
I feel the more I trust in me the brighter all my colors be
And followed by the likes of me I dare to face and to compete
I go and tear to shreds all canting prayers
I cut off hands that hold me back
I’m trashing all the glam, trashing all the glam”

Hit Me‘ is Neuwirth’s message that, no matter how much ownership you think you have of him, his artistry and his music, you have none. He won’t break himself in two for you.

“You don’t get to raise complaint
And you don’t get your rights back
‘Cause I won’t let you threaten me
And I won’t give you parts of me”.

And then today’s release WURST’s ‘See Me Now‘ — his thank you and then farewell, to those who want him to continue to do what had stopped making him happy. Because he is on his way onwards and upwards. With or without you.

“You can see me reach, I can see you drown
Quite absurd my mind already travelled far
Farther than your eyes, farther than your heart

‘Cause you will say hold and I will say leap
I was born to show, you were born to keep
You get me now? get me now?”


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#SEEMENOW link in bio

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Listen closely to WURST’s ‘See Me Now‘ — it’s important in so many ways

And now we are back to W Crash and his comment at the beginning of this article. Just in time for me to point out, regardless of what he thinks, WURST’s ‘See Me Now‘ is notgeneric electronic forgettable music”.

Far from it.

First and foremost, WURST’s ‘See Me Now‘ is Tom Neuwirth’s message to people that would hold him back for their own selfish reasons, he will not be held back. Not for any reason, or for anyone.

The song itself is also beautifully written (Music Composer and Producer: Albin Janoska, Composer and Lyricist: Eva Klampfer). It allows Tom Neuwirth to showcase his phenomenal vocal range, but is also an electro-pop ballad that is rich and complex in both music and lyrics. Something I will admit does not really hit you the first listen through. Put it on repeat for a while, though, and you will see what I mean.

It is also a superb example of how much Neuwirth has developed musically, vocally and artistically since his Eurovision win.

To such an extent, there is little connection to how he used to sound and how he sounds now. Or to his personality back then and now. Or to his artistry which, when you think he has pushed it as far as he can, the next thing he does breaks out into something even more vibrant and cool.

And most importantly, and why you should be watching Tom Neuwirth’s every move with WURST?

Along with his first two releases as this new artist, WURST’s ‘See Me Now‘ is just the beginning of a new journey for Tom Neuwirth.

A journey, I believe, that will ultimately make him happier than Conchita was able to. At least back then. Because this journey is on his own terms for the first time ever. And nothing is more important than that. And nothing is more likely to truly make him fly.

Listen to WURST’s ‘See Me Now‘ in the video below, and in the Spotify widget below that. Just be careful. It’s addictive.

And do play both over and over again, as this ridiculously talented Austrian artist deserves to go viral with everything he does.

Tom Neuwirth’s debut album as WURST — Truth Over Magnitude — will be released on the Sony record label later in the year.

Related Reading: Will WURST make Tom Neuwirth happy, where Conchita could not?

About Michelle Topham

I'm a Brit-American journalist, former radio DJ at 97X WOXY, and Founder/CEO of Leo Sigh. I'm also obsessed with music, anime, manga, and K-dramas. Help!