Slayyyter
Channeling an early-2000s aesthetic and a dash of modern sex positivity, the pop star and internet seductress Slayyyter is poised for viral stardom. (Illustration by Dorothy Timan, Indiana University)
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Slayyyter

Born from Stan Twitter and the ashes of early Britney rises Slayyyter, in all her glittery glory.

Remember the early-to-mid 2000s when Disney Channel fashion felt normal, hot pink was the new black and glitter was everywhere? Then get your Tamagotchis back out, because internet pop sensation Slayyyter is about to take you back in time. Make sure to keep your “celly” in your pocket, because you’re going to want to take pics.

Stationed in St. Louis, Missouri, indie singer Slayyyter is the love child of the World Wide Web. Her stage name originates from her wanting to have the same handles for all the different social media platforms she uses, and the number of y’s in her name ensures that she has them. She’s extremely inspired by visuals from the McBling era of the 2000s.

For example, Slayyyter’s aesthetic is a filtered version of a faux Paris Hilton that feels wholly new to the genre of pop for this generation. Her work and image not only tastefully dip into this toned-down 2000s aesthetic, but they are also remnants of the internet’s earlier days. For example, the majority of Slayyyter’s selfies are often taken on a webcam, which makes her profile seem like a compilation of snapshots of a more glamorous MySpace.

Slayyyter has begun refining an era in music that artists like Paris Hilton failed to do in their own time. Somehow, in some way, Slayyyter has made bratty bubblegum pop, flip phones and fake luxury items cool again. Sure, these were all cool back then, but none of those trends lasted longer than their expiration date.

Similar to how Lana Del Rey is inspired by the ‘70s, “Stranger Things” by the ‘80s and Bruno Mars by the ‘90s, Slayyyter is inspired by the 2000s, and she is molding the time period to her artistic formula. She took an aesthetic that was popular in its time, applied it to herself and rebranded it ever so slightly to fit in with today’s crowd. Whether she meant to do so or not, Slayyyter has pushed the trend of obsessing over nostalgia out of the 20th century and into the 21st.

So how does she do it? How does Slayyyter drop songs that feel so inspired by the past, yet are so new and original? The answer to this mystery starts with collaboration.

The young artist frequently collaborates with Ayesha Erotica and Robokid for producing and recording, as well as with a U.K. artist named glitchmood, who was the hand behind Slayyyter’s album covers that echo 2007. Some of these covers include, for example, glowing Sweethearts candy, chunky BFF necklaces and a rotating glass Cupid. According to Slayyyter, she made all of these collaborations “through Twitter.”

Slayyyter and Erotica first joined forces on the duet “BFF,” a high-energy pop banger that will have you speeding on the closest highway with your “super sexy little BFF!” Even though the song is influenced by a supposedly outdated aesthetic, it feels like it was produced a hundred years in the future. It’s a club anthem for girls and gays everywhere, who appreciate a thumping bass and breathy Britney vocals.

Since then, Slayyyter has gained a cult following on Twitter, a success she attributes to Charli XCX’s stans and her own uncensored humor. Slayyyter can constantly be found tweeting self-aware anecdotes about sex and partying, but she also jokes around pretty often. She tweets just about as much as her fans do, and she is up to date with popular Twitter memes (a relatable quality hard to find in most artists of today). Through her personality on social media platforms, Slayyyter has made a name for herself as a trendy contemporary music artist worthy of Stan Twitter’s praise.

What introduced Slayyyter to a wider audience was the February release of her sugary-sweet single “Mine.” A mix of talents from Good Intent, Robokid, Ayesha Erotica and Slayyyter’s own hypnotic songwriting, “Mine” is infectious and catchy. Despite a snippet of the song garnering over 300,000 views on Twitter, there was no official music video released. In fact, Slayyyter had never released a music video despite her lineup of tunes.

Many fans started to wonder when Slayyyter would step into the spotlight instead of letting her aesthetic take all the visual credit. In response to the lack of Slayyyter video content, many fans made their own music videos for her songs. One such homage includes some short clips Slayyyter has released of herself intercut with scenes from iconic ‘90s and 2000s films and paparazzi videos.

It wasn’t until May when Slayyyter dropped the dark, sexually driven single and music video “Daddy AF.” If you weren’t a Slayyyter super fan before, this song will convert you. It’s edgy, sexy and carries just a little bit of gender non-conformity. There’s something powerful in the way Slayyyter calls herself daddy. Half of the song feels like a middle finger to the patriarchy, and the other half feels like an aesthetic choice as cool as Slayyyter’s persona.

Not only is the song exciting, but many fans were hyped to see Slayyyter finally in front of a camera that wasn’t a webcam. The top YouTube comment on the “Daddy AF” video states, “It’s so weird seeing a video with Slayyyter because I started thinking she was a Harvard social experiment to see what the gays would stan.”

The video is raw and dirty, just like the vulgar lyrics present in the song. Slayyyter, instead of getting swallowed up by the times as so many fans predicted, stands out in this visual feast. Video Director Logan Fields did a brilliant job assembling a team of artists to make the perfect, professional video debut for Slayyyter.

So what’s next for the queen of Twitter? Along with starting a tour later in June that runs through July, Slayyyter has also promised that the release of her debut album (tentatively titled “S1”) will come out right before her tour. Slayyyter even has big plans for her second album, “S2,” which she claims is “much better” than the “cute” S1.

Slayyyter had a blast-off entry into the indie pop industry earlier this year with her Daddy AF music video, and she’s only just getting started. If she plays her cards as well as she has been, her debut album and tour will be iconic. With futuristic hit after hit, we’re truly living in Slayyyter’s faux-famous world, and we wouldn’t want it any other way.

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