On May 9, Bec Plexus threw a 24-hour party, via livestream, to honor the release of her newest album, STICKLIP, in which she created 10 psychedelic music videos to accompany the songs on the record. The videos mimic the live performances she had prepared prior to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The Road to Sound is premiering each of these videos over the next ten weeks. This is the ninth article in our series. You can catch up on the whole series here.
The ninth installation of Bec Plexus’ video release spree is Molly Joyce’s “think out loud,” a vivid piece that advocates for a positive mindset. Joyce’s music often explores reverberant electronics, stemming from her instrument of choice — the vintage toy organ. Here, those interests shine through, as rich drones and warm textures color the music with a radiant warmth. Plexus’ voice intersperses between the luscious backdrop; the music is enveloping and entrancing.
In Plexus’ words:
“‘think out loud’ by Molly Joyce is one of the more clear songs in some ways, how the styles of her musical influence and mine merged. You can really hear Molly’s musical style in it, but at the same time there’s also elements that are very unusual for her. And the text is very Molly, I think. It’s very repetitive and consists of bricks that she’s replacing and reordering. Vocally, it’s quite hard to sing. I’d say when I’m singing it, I’m being asked by the lyrics if I’m proud of my sound, do I wanna think out loud, do I dare to be proud, and at the same time I’m singing this really complex melody with massive jumps and rhythms, and so in that sense, it’s a great exercise. Every bar is in a different meter, so it took ages to memorize. It sounds one directional and coherent, and simple in the best way, but it’s far from that. It’s one of the most complex songs to do.
I directed the video, and my idea was to start again with the monologue. In the live show, everyone would have gotten the format: the guy’s in front of the black screen, now we’re gonna hear a story. But this time, the story doesn’t come. The person’s silent, but he’s standing there again with that mask. All the masks were there to make it clear that it’s a story that they don’t dare to say out loud, which was the whole idea of the show. He’s silent and he starts moving his hands, his hands are bare, and he starts touching his face to the extent that the digital mask starts to glitch. At some point, he breaks the mask, and the mask disappears, and you see his face. That’s when the song starts, and it was just an idea to try to play with expectation.
At some point, the camera moves back and you see that we’re actually not in a black box, but we’re outside in the park. And then we move more back again, and you see all the trees. It was a very simple, abstract idea, but in the context of the whole show, we wanted to play with the form. Because the song is called ‘think out loud,’ thematically, the person in the video didn’t have an actual story to tell, they thought out loud by dancing. So it was, I think, the most direct way to tell the story because the song is so abstract, there is not an actual story to it. It’s more about a mindset.”