Fauness Details the Magical World of Her “Maiden No More” EP
Her magical EP, co-produced by Jam City, is out today via Cascine.
Fauness makes spritely pop music with piercing emotional depth. On her latest EP Maiden No More, featuring effervescent co-production from Jam City, Fauness takes us to otherworldly pastoral fields—and even time travels—to give her younger self advice. Opener “Arduous Journeys Undertaken Alone” transforms horse hooves galloping on pavement into a hypnotic ride into her technicolored world. Fauness immediately illustrates that her songs are woven with magic, the kind that can carry us into another realm of her own making.
On the sweet 12 minutes these four tracks span, Fauness owns the pain of her past and demands liberation for her future. “Cut the cord from me / Set your girl, set your girl free,” she sings during the chorus on “Dragonfly.” Twinkling chimes and cascading pedal steel set the scene for her vocals to soar off into the whirling breeze. “My destiny is mine / And I’m a dragonfly,” she sings excitedly.
On closer “It Gets Better” she pens a letter to her younger self, validating all the hurt and emotional adversity she underwent. Writing to Cora, which is her birth name, she reveals another layer of herself. “It wasn’t my intention to keep my ‘real’ identity from my listeners until now,” she noted ahead of the EP’s release. “If anything, my artist name Fauness represents my truest self, more aligned with my essence and my experience than Cora. Through music, I get to share my most authentic self in a way that’s impossible in day-to-day life.”
Fauness’ captivating ability to bake heartfelt sincerity into shimmering, bouncy pop songs is proof that she’s got an exciting future ahead of her. Maiden No More is a lovely achievement—one that would definitely put an ear-to-ear smile on her younger self’s face.
Listen to Maiden No More below, and read what Fauness had to say about each track.
1. “Arduous Journeys Undertaken Alone”
For years I’d wanted to do a song with galloping horses’ hooves as percussion. It made sense for this EP to have an introduction, something to set the tone and transport the listener into my world. With “Arduous Journeys,” the listener is literally transported, on horseback, into the EP’s emotional landscape. It was also fun with this song to do something more abstract with my voice. Lyrics are part of my songwriting process from the beginning, I never go back and add them in later. With this one, it was nice and refreshing to be completely liberated from that kind of communication, even though I love the poetry side of my regular writing process, too.
Speaking of liberation, “Dragonfly” is quite clearly about setting oneself free. But what does freedom mean exactly? In our culture, we talk a lot about empowerment, but talk less about what we’re actually empowering ourselves to do. This song is about the process of liberation and the joy it can bring. It intentionally leaves unanswered/open-ended the question of what comes next. Maybe the joy of the process, of cutting the cord, is enough for now. This song is almost exactly like the original demo I recorded, only with some extra slide guitar at the beginning, and some extra synth-y sparkles.
I’ve never actually done archery before, but I imagine that I probably wouldn’t be very good at it. We associate arrows with precision, with skill, with hitting the target. Yet many arrows inevitably miss and fall to the ground. The arrow in this song not only misses the mark; it curves back around, boomerang style, and travels back to the shooter, piercing their heart. This is a metaphor for the expectations that can be placed upon us and the difficulty we may find in matching up to them. We’ve all had someone in our lives be disappointed in us for some reason or another, whether in childhood or beyond. “Arrow” touches on that feeling as an everyday, sustained, mundane (yet nonetheless painful) experience.
4. “It Gets Better”
I can say this now that this song has been released as a single, but I felt extremely vulnerable putting “It Gets Better” out into the world. Although it’s a polished, hook-y, bouncy song, it contains 100 percent raw unedited emotion. The song is structured as a letter between myself now and my younger self, when I was going through one of many difficult phases as a teenager. It took a lot of courage to share it and it means so much when people say it resonated with their own personal experience too. That’s the soul of music-making: to move from the personal to the universal as the piece crosses over from creator to listener.