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"Chlorine" is a song written and recorded by the American musical duo Twenty One Pilots. The song was released on October 5, 2018 as part of their fifth studio album, Trench, by Fueled by Ramen and on January 22, 2019 as the fifth single from this album plus a music video. The track was written and produced by lead singer Tyler Joseph and Paul Meany of rock band Mutemath. It is a pop, electropop, and trip hop song which discusses "how creativity can cleanse dark impulses but cause its own pain."

"Chlorine"
The official cover for the single Chlorine.jpg
"Alt Mix" cover art
Single by Twenty One Pilots
from the album Trench
ReleasedJanuary 22, 2019 (2019-01-22)
Studio
Genre
Length5:24
LabelFueled by Ramen
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)
  • Tyler Joseph
  • Paul Meany (co.)
Twenty One Pilots singles chronology
"My Blood"
(2018)
"Chlorine"
(2019)
"The Hype"
(2019)
Audio sample
Music video
"Chlorine" on YouTube

"Chlorine" was well received by music critics, who highlighted its catchiness and musical restraint compared to the band's previous work. It peaked at number five on the Bubbling Under Hot 100 chart, and reached number one in Latvia and Mexico. Upon the song's release, a music video directed by Mark Eshleman of Reel Bear Media was shared.

Contents

CompositionEdit

As with much of Trench, "Chlorine" was written and produced by Tyler Joseph, the lead singer of Twenty One Pilots, and Paul Meany of Mutemath, who also provided the voice for the track's opening lines.[3] The songwriting process and recording took place in secret in Joseph's basement studio in Columbus, Ohio, while the track was mixed by Adam Hawkins and mastered by Chris Gehringer at Sterling Sound, New York City.[4][1] In an "Ask Me Anything" session on Reddit, Joseph wrote that "wrestling on trying to tackle what he was feeling in 'Chlorine' was exhausting."[5]

According to sheet music published at Musicnotes.com by Sony/ATV Music Publishing, "Chlorine" is set in common time with a "melancholy" tempo of 90 beats per minute. The song is composed in the key of B♭ minor, with Joseph's vocals ranging between the notes of F3 and D♭5.[6] It is a pop, electropop, and trip hop song featuring a lowered voice found on the band's previous album Blurryface and a "menacing, Zaytoven-esque piano twinkle".[7][8][9][10] It has been described as a "menacing slow-burner" with an "annoyingly infectious" chorus comparable to the work of Bastille, Thom Yorke and Gym Class Heroes.[10][11][12][13] Paige Williams of Billboard suggested that the track was about cleansing your mind from dark thoughts,[9] while Caryn Ganz of The New York Times stated that it "describes how creativity can cleanse dark impulses but cause its own pain."[11]

ReleaseEdit

Trench was released on October 5, 2018. Chlorine was released as the fifth track of the album. On January 22, 2019, fans of Twenty One Pilots began speculating that a music video for the song "Chlorine" would be released the following day due to a series of teasers that the band posted on social media, including a short clip of a dirty swimming pool soundtracked by a drum beat similar to the one found on the track. Tyler Joseph, the band's lead singer, also posted a message on Twitter which reads "there's someone i'd like you guys to meet. i'll introduce you to him tomorrow. his name is Ned. <{•.•}>".[14][15] However, the band later announced that they could not wait to share the video any longer and subsequently released the music video that same day.[16][17] Just prior to this release, an image of a letter written by Clancy, the protagonist of the storyline of Trench, was uploaded to the website dmaorg.info, which prompts the file name 17-35.4527, 17 and 35.4527 being the atomic number and atomic mass of the chemical chlorine respectively.[18] Additionally, on January 23, the letter was updated with the words "than" and "happened" being replaced by "that" and "happen" respectively. A Reddit user later discovered that the letter changes spelled out the name "Ned", the name of the creature featured in song's music video.[19]

On January 29, 2019, "Chlorine" was serviced to alternative radio,[20] and on February 8, the "Alt Mix" version of the song, which cuts the song's intro and outro, was released on streaming services.[21]

ReceptionEdit

"Chlorine" pleased music critics, with positive sentiments being directed towards its catchiness and the band's increased songwriting maturity compared to their antecedent records. Joshua Copperman of PopMatters complimented "Chlorine"'s musical restraint in comparison to the band's previous work and opined that it featured the "catchiest chorus on the record."[8] Gary Ryan of NME wrote that the track was one of the songs off Trench "strong enough to exist outside of any story," referring to the narrative found on the album.[12] Billboard writer Chris Payne found that the evolution of the band's musical style on tracks off Trench including "Chlorine" as "jarring."[10] GIG Soup's Jo Cosgrove expressed a similar sentiment, further adding that the song was "catchy" and "in-depth."[22] David Hayter of 411 Mania hailed the track as "delightful," ultimately concluding that it "is something both murky and spritely, psychologically wrought, but charmingly euphoric."[23] Anne Nickoloff and Troy Smith of Cleveland.com named the release the eighth best Twenty One Pilots song, deeming it the most accessible track off Trench.[24]

Music videoEdit

The music video for "Chlorine" was uploaded upon the song's release as a single on January 22, 2019, and was directed by Mark C. Eshleman of Reel Bear Media.[25] The creation of the character Ned was undertaken from mid-December 2018 using 3D VFX and physical stand-in mold.[26] In an interview in Kiev during The Bandito Tour, the band explained that Ned represents "this idea of creativity and trying to take care of it and trying to please it... or appease it."[27] The video shows the duo filling up a dirty swimming pool and cleaning it while being watched by a small, white alien-like creature with antlers, black eyes and hairy bat ears named Ned. When the duo finish cleaning and filling the pool, Ned dives into it and his antlers seem to grow. The video ends with Joseph sitting in an empty pool accompanied by the creature, whose antlers begin to shrink again, before offering it a cup of liquid, which Ned refuses to take.[28][29] As of August 2019, the video has surpassed 140 million views on YouTube.

19.4326° N, 99.1332° W versionEdit

"Chlorine (19.4326° N, 99.1332° W)"
 
Song by Twenty One Pilots
ReleasedJune 21, 2019 (2019-06-21)
FormatDigital download
Recorded2019
Length3:58
LabelFueled by Ramen
Songwriter(s)
  • Tyler Joseph
  • Paul Meany
Music video
"Chlorine (19.4326° N, 99.1332° W)" on YouTube

"Chlorine (19.4326° N, 99.1332° W)" is a re-imagined version of the track released to streaming services on June 21, 2019.[30] It is the first unplugged performance of a track from Trench to be released from the band's Løcatiøn Sessiøns series, and is presumed to have been recorded at a private concert in Mexico City, where the coordinates in the song's title points. Musically, it features Joseph singing "Chlorine" over a piano and a sparse beat.[31][32][33][34]

Track listingEdit

US promotional CD
No.TitleLength
1."Chlorine" (radio edit #1)2:55
2."Chlorine" (radio edit #2)2:02
3."Chlorine" (radio edit #3)1:59
4."Chlorine" (album version)5:24
5."Chlorine" (instrumental)5:25
Chlorine (Alt Mix)
No.TitleLength
1."Chlorine" (Alt Mix)3:11
Spotify single[35]
No.TitleLength
1."Chlorine"5:24
2."Chlorine" (Alt Mix)3:11
Chlorine (19.4326° N, 99.1332° W)[30]
No.TitleLength
1."Chlorine (19.4326° N, 99.1332° W)"3:58
Chlorine (19.4326° N, 99.1332° W) on Spotify[36]
No.TitleLength
1."Chlorine (19.4326° N, 99.1332° W)"3:58
2."Chlorine"5:24

Credits and personnelEdit

Credits adapted from the liner notes of Trench and Twenty One Pilots' official YouTube channel.[4][37]

Recording and management

Twenty One Pilots

  • Tyler Joseph – lead vocals, bass, synthesizers, guitar, piano, programming, keyboards, songwriting, production
  • Josh Dun – drums, trumpet, percussion, backing vocals

Additional personnel

ChartsEdit

Weekly chartsEdit

Chart (2018–19) Peak
position
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[38] 37
Belgium (Ultratip Wallonia)[39] 35
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[40] 85
Czech Republic (Rádio Top 100)[41] 6
Czech Republic (Singles Digitál Top 100)[42] 14
Ireland (IRMA)[43] 64
Latvia (Latvijas Top 40)[44] 1
Mexico (Billboard Ingles Airplay)[45] 1
New Zealand Hot Singles (RMNZ)[46] 12
Romania (Airplay 100)[47] 66
Scotland (Official Charts Company)[48] 81
Slovakia (Singles Digitál Top 100)[49] 28
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[50] 82
US Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles (Billboard)[51] 5
US Hot Rock Songs (Billboard)[52] 3
US Mainstream Top 40 (Billboard)[53] 32
US Rock Airplay (Billboard)[54] 4

Year-end chartsEdit

Chart (2018) Position
US Hot Rock Songs (Billboard)[55] 97

CertificationsEdit

Region Certification Certified units/sales
Canada (Music Canada)[56] Gold 40,000 
Poland (ZPAV)[57] Gold 10,000*
United States (RIAA)[58] Gold 500,000 

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone
 sales+streaming figures based on certification alone

Release historyEdit

Region Date Format Label(s) Ref.
United States January 29, 2019 Alternative [20]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c Carter, Emily. "Twenty One Pilots: They're back! And their journey to create Trench is a story that could only come from them... - Kerrang!". PressReader. Archived from the original on December 19, 2018. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
  2. ^ a b mj (September 7, 2018). "Twenty One Pilots Tracks Songs for "Trench" at United Recording - United Recording Studios". United Recording Studios, Los Angeles. Retrieved October 1, 2018.
  3. ^ Goeman, Collin (January 25, 2019). "Voice behind twenty one pilots' "Chlorine" intro revealed". Alternative Press. Archived from the original on January 26, 2019. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
  4. ^ a b Trench (Media notes). Twenty One Pilots. Fueled by Ramen. 2018.CS1 maint: others (link)
  5. ^ Brooks, Hayden (January 23, 2019). "Twenty One Pilots Befriend An Alien In 'Chlorine' Music Video". iHeartRadio. Archived from the original on January 26, 2019. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
  6. ^ "Twenty One Pilots "Chlorine" Sheet Music in B♭ Minor (transposable) – Download & Print". Musicnotes.com. Archived from the original on June 20, 2019. Retrieved June 20, 2019. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |website= (help)
  7. ^ Eldrenkamp, Gracianne (October 17, 2018). "Twenty-One Pilots Releases 'Trench'". The Fairfield Mirror. Archived from the original on January 26, 2019. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
  8. ^ a b Copperman, Joshua (October 12, 2018). "Twenty One Pilots Get Sensitive on 'Trench'". PopMatters. Archived from the original on January 25, 2019. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
  9. ^ a b Williams, Paige (October 5, 2018). "Twenty One Pilots' 'Trench': Decoding the New Album's Hidden Meanings". Billboard. Archived from the original on October 6, 2018. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
  10. ^ a b c Payne, Chris (October 5, 2018). "Twenty One Pilots Continue to Defy Critics on Surprisingly Cohesive 'Trench': Album Review". Billboard. Archived from the original on October 6, 2018. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
  11. ^ a b Ganz, Caryn (October 15, 2018). "Twenty One Pilots Want to Stay Strange". The New York Times. Archived from the original on October 15, 2018. Retrieved February 5, 2019.
  12. ^ a b Ryan, Gary (October 5, 2018). "Twenty One Pilots – 'Trench' review". NME. Archived from the original on October 5, 2018. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
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  18. ^ Campbell, Rachel (January 22, 2019). "Clancy returns in mysterious, new twenty one pilots letter". Alternative Press. Archived from the original on January 23, 2019. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
  19. ^ Campbell, Rachel (January 23, 2019). "Clancy edits latest mysterious twenty one pilots letter". Alternative Press. Archived from the original on January 25, 2019. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
  20. ^ a b "Future Releases on Alternative Radio Stations, Independent Artist Song Releases". All Access. Retrieved February 9, 2019.
  21. ^ * Digital release of "Chlorine (Alt Mix)":
  22. ^ Cosgrove, Jo (November 2, 2018). "Twenty One Pilots 'Trench'". GIG Soup. Archived from the original on April 1, 2019. Retrieved July 2, 2019.
  23. ^ Hayter, David (October 9, 2018). "Twenty One Pilots – Trench Review". 411 Mania. Archived from the original on October 12, 2018. Retrieved July 2, 2019.
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  26. ^ Hannan, Devon (January 26, 2019). "twenty one pilots' Ned was not just a VFX character, creators share experience on "Chlorine"". Alternative Press. Archived from the original on January 26, 2019. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
  27. ^ Trapp, Philip (February 4, 2019). "twenty one pilots discuss Ned, say he's "not a gremlin"". Alternative Press. Archived from the original on February 5, 2019. Retrieved February 5, 2019.
  28. ^ Gil, Kaufman (January 23, 2019). "Twenty One Pilots Clean Pools, Chill With Adorable Alien Pal Ned in 'Chlorine' Video: Watch". Billboard. Archived from the original on January 25, 2019. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
  29. ^ Aubrey, Elizabeth (January 23, 2019). "Watch Twenty One Pilots new video for 'Chlorine' and meet 'Ned', the band's animated friend". NME. Archived from the original on January 26, 2019. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
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  34. ^ Darus, Alex (June 21, 2019). "twenty one pilots kick off Location Sessions with "Chlorine" stripped". Alternative Press. Archived from the original on June 21, 2019. Retrieved June 21, 2019.
  35. ^ "Chlorine". Spotify. Retrieved April 4, 2019.
  36. ^ "Chlorine". Spotify. Retrieved April 4, 2019.
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  42. ^ "ČNS IFPI" (in Czech). Hitparáda – Digital Top 100 Oficiální. IFPI Czech Republic. Note: Change the chart to CZ – SINGLES DIGITAL – TOP 100 and insert 201908 into search. Retrieved February 26, 2019.
  43. ^ "IRMA – Irish Charts". IRMA. Retrieved January 26, 2019.
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  58. ^ "American single certifications – Twenty One Pilots – Chlorine". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved July 3, 2019. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH. 

External linksEdit