On “Paper Mache”, Iris Lune‘s lead singer Ella Joy brings listeners on a vicarious journey through her mind.
As the track progresses, more layers of ornate electronic synth are introduced, and everything becomes wilier and more undone. Still, it’s Joy’s captivating vocals that remain the heart of the song and establish it as a scintillating listen. The story that she presents is dark as her character develops an illusory “paper mache love”, but it never feels hopeless.
Ella Joy says, “‘Paper Mache’ talks about how we sometimes try to control our inner monsters or darkness with external things. The character in the song is struggling with loving herself, with all of her quirky weirdness, and uses external actions to help her find that love (‘counting the lights on my way out’ or ‘turn off the phone, make it stay out’). She finally settles on a ‘Paper Mache love’—homemade, seemingly beautiful and strong, but actually very fragile and unstable. This love that she’s created will fall apart; it’s made of paper and water. She will only have true comfort once she releases this false consolation and accepts that she can’t control things.”
“I have some experience with these kinds of feelings—as a kid I was very neurotic and felt I had to do certain things to make sure everything would be all right—say good night in Hebrew and English both, touch all the walls as I passed by them, do things symmetrically on both sides of my body, etc. As an adult, I’ve learned how to release these needs but when I’m especially stressed they can return to some extent.”
“This dialogue with my inner demons has two sides to it. The first is talking to myself and trying to convince myself that I don’t need to control all of these external things. The second is accepting that I’ll always have these urges within me, and accepting my strangeness/quirkiness. At the end of the day, it’s all about the process you work through with yourself. Others can help guide you through it, but you have to believe you can change whatever’s bothering you and make it happen.”
// Notes from the Road
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