Written by Stephanie Kleanthous
Illustrated by Laura Buckell
Multi-hyphenate artist Maeve has just released her new track Manic Pixie Dream Girl. Hailing from the Cayman Islands with Irish heritage, Maeve has self-produced a distinctive sound with electronic beats, making a statement through her lyrics about the manic pixie dream girl trope.
Maeve explains, “the manic pixie dream girl is a trope that refers to a specific female character in film. These female characters exist to help often lonely, depressed men to live their life and further their character development”. The term was coined by critic Nathan Rabin in his review of Elizabethtown (2005) to describe the “psychotically chipper” flight attendant played by Kirsten Dunst.
“This song is about feeling like this manic pixie dream girl trope in real-life, realising it and then rejecting it,” she states. “When I was producing it I wanted to have these aggressive sonics fighting with the more delicate piano to show this transition.”
The haunting bass, drums, distortion and raspy tone are accompanied by lyrics on how detrimental it is to live as the manic pixie dream girl: “I killed myself to let you grow”. Maeve juxtaposes visuals of holiness, “swinging slowly next to Jesus”, with pain and injuries as she’s “all black eyes and bloody bruised”. This could symbolise the damaging pedestal women are often placed upon, denying us room for growth, mistakes or to live for ourselves.
Once we transition to the piano and airy falsetto vocals, the unapologetic rejection submerges and Maeve’s declaration of independence, rebirth and becoming the main character is made: “Not your holy ghost, not your antidote, not your cameo, I’m the goddamn show.”
Since picking up the guitar aged fourteen, Maeve has been focused on flourishing her writing, sound and vision. Inspired by visual artists such as Kate Bush, Björk and Imogen Heap, she embraces innovation, immersive experience and the capabilities of new technology. I can’t wait to hear more on her upcoming EP this Spring.
Discover more about Maeve below: