Dramatic and ferocious, the elusive MANE is back with her impressively bold new single What If The Love Dies that is accompanied by an astounding, mind-bending clip that is sure to gather all the right attention. To celebrate the release, MANE is set to hit the road later this year, stopping by The Gasometer (Melbourne) on October 19, Rocket Bar (Adelaide) on Oct 27, Rad Bar (Wollongong) on Nov 1 and Brighton Up Bar (Sydney) on November 2.
What If The Love Dies says it all, really. An afflicting question, made even more so when chanted eerily by MANE in the depths of her luscious, chesty voice, as the song peddles the connection between two people in a long distance relationship, and the struggles, uncertainty and frustration the distance can bring about. Reminiscent of the theatrical and innovative Montaigne and characterised by razor-sharp vocal melodies that are not dissimilar to those of wunderkind Gretta Ray, What If The Love Dies includes all the bluesy rawness that audiences expect from MANE, but with a new electronic edge that feels dangerous and exciting all at once. Mixed by the Grammy and multiple ARIA winning Eric J Dubowsky (Chet Faker, Kimbra), the woman behind MANE, Paige Renee Court, opens up about the new single, saying “I’m very keen to be releasing this one – I’ve worked hard on it and had the good fortune of some great people working with me.”
Dave Ruby Howe from triple j Unearthed has already gifted the single four stars, saying, “This song has this towering pop feel to it – which could be due in part to the mix from studio heavyweight Eric J (Flume, Meg Mac, Odesza). Throw in MANE’s big but dark vocal delivery and you’re entering impressive territory.” Also a fan, Dom Alessio from Home & Hosed says, “There’s something enchanting about this dark, caliginous pop song.”
The clip for What If The Love Dies is appropriately spooky, playing out like a Hollywood blockbuster with a foreboding sense of lovers scorned. Directed by Kieren Ellis-Jones of Crystal Arrow Films (The Hard Aches), nothing is as it seems as the MANE band play blindfolded upside down and right side up; a man and a woman, also blindfolded, try to find common ground which proves a difficult task when the gravity keeps playing tricks. Reflecting on the meaning behind the video, Paige remarks, “We played on a ‘love is blind’ narrative quite literally. Between the performance shots of the band, the story of two people evidently in love spans over three completely different eras in time…but there is a constant sense of distance between them.”
Currently on tour in Europe and the UK, the seasoned performer is thrilled to head back to Australia for a few shows to promote What If The Love Dies, enthusing, “The past year I have been working really hard with the band to create a live sound that emulates the recordings but also has a rawness to it that I feel excited about. I put a lot of energy into the performance; at times it’s a little dark but other times it’s a lot of fun.”
Jen caught up with MANE once again today.
Hi, great to have a chat again, I last spoke to you after your music video came out for ‘Bitter’, how have been travelling since then? Must have been busy as we now have another unique song and music video out for us to enjoy.
Hi! Things have been great, I’ve been writing and working on my live set and getting ready for the upcoming east coast tour for the new single. Can’t wait.
Your new single ‘What if the Love Dies’ is based on a long-distance relationship. I experienced one of those and it did not work out well. Life is great now though! Is this song based on you or someone else you know? To me it seems to hit the nail on the head so must be from some personal experience.
I wrote this song quite a while ago and at the time that I wrote it, it was about someone else’s experience however more recently I have been in one myself and the song has taken on a new meaning to me personally for that.
It has more of an edgy dark pop sound than ‘Bitter’ do you think that this is due to having a different emotional state when writing it or did it just turn out that way?
I think perhaps a little of both. I think the production definitely helps make it what it is but the song itself definitely has a more broodier tone (for lack of a better word) than anything else i have previously released.
Got some fantastic glowing reviews from your Triple J peers on What if the Love Dies’. Is there one person in the world that their review means the most?
I’ve never really thought about this! But I think getting some input from someone like Lorde would be rad as I deeply respect her as an artist and I think her new album is incredible. I feel like she is so wise beyond her years and would have a lot to offer.
Love the music video. Great idea for wearing blind folds to represent Love is Blind. Can’t help who we love and where they live! The different portrayal of different couples as well are a unique concept and this added to the music video portraying the emotional message of the song. You know all this, I guess my question is who came up with the concept and who worked with you on this?
Thankyou! I worked with Kieren Ellis-Jones of Crystal Arrow films for the clip. He is amazing and such a wiz at this kind of thing. I pretty much went to him with the song and said “let’s make something weird” and he had a really cool narrative idea and we workshopped it from there to make it a little abstract and have a distorted sense of reality.
I watched a video of you from WOMAdelaide Festival. I really liked your stage presence and interaction with the crowd. Did you enjoy performing at this festival? Can you tell us a little about it?
WOMAdelaide was such a beautiful experience. It’s so humbling to play on a lineup that has such a high calibre of artist. I think it’s definitely up there as one of my favourite gigs. The festival organisers did such a good job and I was stoked to not only be able to play but also enjoy a whole bunch of artists over the course of the weekend.
You have just finished a Europe Tour, can you tell us a bit about this trip? Would love to hear what you have been up to.
The UK and European tour was pretty special. It’s such an exciting scene over there and it was really nice to be able to get a sense of where my music fits in another country, the music seemed to be received really well and I can honestly say I didn’t play one show that let me down. It far surpassed what I expected. I’m hoping to go back asap.
You have your first of a 4 show East Coast Tour of Australia, kicking off in my home city of Melbourne. What can punters expect from this show and the rest of the tour?
I’ve been working on the live set the last few months and I think it’s coming together nicely. I’ll be playing with a band so the sound will be full and have an energy similar to what you hear in my recordings. There will be new songs and old songs. I’m really looking forward to it. I think it will be a lot of fun and I’m excited to be touring across Aus again.
That tour pretty much takes us to the end of the year, do you have an plans for next year or goals that you want to achieve next year?
Im hoping to have another new song in the not too distant future ready to release. Hopefully more touring plans arise and I plan to just keep writing and creating the music I want to be making.
Thanks for your time. I wish you all the best for your upcoming tour and single release.
WHAT IF THE LOVE DIES EAST COAST SHOWSTHURS 19 OCT | GASOMETER UPSTAIRS, MELBOURNE | 18+
Tickets available from https://gasometer.oztix.com.au/?Event=77088
FRIDAY 27 OCT | ROCKET BAR, ADELAIDE | 18+
Tickets available from http://www.bit.ly/CatsOct27
WED 1 NOV | RAD BAR, WOLLONGONG | 18+
Tickets available from http://www.moshtix.com.au/v2/event/mane-supports-tba/97956
THURS 2 NOV | BRIGHTON UP BAR, SYDNEY | 18+
Tickets available from https://www.musicglue.com/brighton-up-bar/events/3beb71a0-6077-0135-5379-664640c4859d