RUEL Puts a Magnifying Glass to Stan Culture in “Face to Face”

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Photo: Michelle Grace Hunder

stan
/stan/

1. Noun: An overzealous or obsessive fan.
“Beyoncé stans, collectively known as The Beyhive, often refer to Beyoncé as their god.”

2. Verb: To admire to the point of intense obsession.
“We stan pineapple on pizza.”

If you’re active on social media, odds are you know the term defined above. We mostly use it affectionately, referring to our favorite artists, fashion trends, or pizza toppings. However, the term’s roots are a little darker, originating as a reference to Eminem’s epic poem “Stan” in which the artist raps from the perspective of letters from a deranged fan trying to capture his attention. Interestingly, lot has changed since the track was released in 2000, especially with how fans can interact with their obsessions. RUEL’s latest track “Face to Face” and the accompanying video reexamines the “stan,” mirroring Eminem’s original meaning for the social media era.

The inspiration for “Face to Face,” which was produced by Grammy winner M-Phazes, came from RUEL’s experiences with obsessions and perceived rejections on social media. In a tongue-in-cheek twist, however, RUEL plays the fan in his music video. Beneath the track’s lush, R&B-hued instrumentation, the singer messages his current pop star obsession on social media while running around Paris before her show. Though RUEL’s honey-soaked vocal would never indicate so, things take a dark turn when… well, watch the video and see for yourself.

“Face to Face” is the artist’s second single teasing the release of his sophomore EP FREE TIME on Sept. 13. In the past year, the Australian crooner has won the prestigious ARIA award for Breakthrough Artist of the Year in addition to becoming the youngest male to sell out the Sydney Opera House… twice. 

In October, he’ll be departing on a 13-date North American tour to support FREE TIME. Grab your tickets, and in the mean time, stan the video for “Face to Face” here:

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