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Music by VICE

Foie Gras Finds the Beauty of Suffering in "Devotee"

Watch the dreamy, purpled new video from the Bay Area-turned-Seattle drone folk muse.

by Kim Kelly
Jan 4 2017, 5:42pm

San Francisco-turned-Seattle artist Foie Gras is an elegant noir enigma. Her spangled drone folk floats quietly on a cloud of clove smoke and chloroform, inviting and intimidating in shifting measures. The drones undulate in slow motion beneath rippling dark folk chord progressions, and her black-eyed, breathy vocals whisper wine-stained secrets about sex, death, love, and flesh. Listening to a Foie Gras song is akin to taking a heady pull on a joint, closing your eyes immediately afterwards, and holding onto that woozy, weightless feeling when your brain first tries to orient itself against the gentle poison curling its way through your cells. The dying-but-not-dead feeling, a lavender fog with wispy tendrils, beckons you in closer, closer, and closer still—then out come the teeth. She's not yours, never was

We're delighted to be premiering a new Foie Gras video below, for the track "Devotee." Directed by Nedda Afsari/Muted Fawn and Kristin Cofer and edited by Sera Timms (also of Black Mare and Ides of Gemini), the video plays in the dreamy, dark recesses of dread and desire, bathed in muted purples and raw pinks. Cofer explains, "The core of my relationship with Nedda is collaborating on art. The video developed one evening when I was practicing a certain lighting technique and asked her to model for some photos. We had so much fun doing the photos that I decided to start filming. Later, when Foie Gras asked if we could create a music video for her, we decided to edit the filmed footage to fit her song. The mood of both pieces were a perfect match."

Timms adds, "To me the song translates visually into a nostalgic portrait of desire, so I wanted to make it feel a bit old and dreamlike while respecting the beautifully shot original footage Kristin and Nedda gave me to edit. There is a pendulum swing of the lyrics which go from poetic sadism to melancholy heartache, and innocence, so cinematically I tried to convey the layers of kaleidoscopic emotions and inner workings of a woman who holds the power to seduce, but longs to not have to. "

Foie Gras offers a deeper explanation of the song itself, citing a Vanity Fair interview with elderly French dominatrix Catherine Robbe-Grillet as the impetus behind her writing "Devotee." As she explains, "Robbe-Grillet's 'pet' (and virtually anyone who comes in contact with her) falls so incredibly and genuinely in love with her and says, 'It is not about pain. It is about how to suffer beautifully, like Saint Sebastian.'

Her profession that seemingly revolves around sex forces a more intimate and spiritual climate into perspective from what I gather. She not only commands flesh, she inspires true devotion. Her power spans beyond her gender or her lifestyle... it's the person she is that is so intoxicating. Her sessions are comparable to holy experience deriving a lot of inspiration from her Catholic upbringing. Alas, this short article about her life inspired me to write a song about complete devotion with a couple nods to Garbage's "Crush."

Watch the video below:

Kim Kelly is dreaming on Twitter.

Photo by Úna Blue.