Jennifer Nettles has rightfully grown confident in her acting abilities, following stints as Roxie Hart in the Broadway musical Chicago and Dolly Parton’s mother Avie Lee in the television movie Coat of Many Colors. In the new video for her single “Unlove You,” Nettles puts those skills to work and does most of the heavy emotional lifting without even having to leave her barstool.
The song’s depiction of a very adult conflict — love and attraction outside a primary relationship — is fully fleshed out to fantastical extremes in its Trey Fanjoy-directed video. Dressed in fiery red, Nettles nervously waits at a bar while nursing a whiskey. Her face shows the gamut of emotions when her date arrives: relief, happiness, desire, guilt. Making the forbidden aspect of their relationship clear, the video shifts to mesmerizing underwater shots of the couple as Nettles sings the line, “They call it fire, but it feels just like drowning/ with the weight of my burning desire.” Back in the bar, Nettles makes a hasty exit but her struggle seems far from reaching any kind of resolution.
“Unlove You” was written by Nettles with Brandy Clark and is the first single from her second solo album Playing With Fire, due out May 13th via Big Machine Records. Nettles and Clark are currently on the road together as part of the CMT Next Women of Country Tour and Nettles will appear in the March 24th episode of CMT Crossroads opposite incoming Rock & Roll Hall of Fame members Cheap Trick.