anaiis - reverie
Released: June 2021
Label: dream sequence recordings
For anaiis, the concept of home is a complex thing. The French-Senegalese singer having briefly lived in cities across the world, took up study at NYU, then finally settled in London. Moving gave her a consciousness and understanding that is a consistent theme within her artistry.
Despite playing the Violin and studying music theory, anaiis relies heavily on feel. Her 2020 track, 'vanishing' is centered around a simple piano loop that places you in a state of tranquility. Latest track 'reverie' is no different, with its soothing piano chords and minimalist percussion arrangement. The addition of occasional prolonged horns adds an element of soul that complements the track's fluid nature.
Lyrically she dedicates the track to those struggling with self-doubt, and her skill as a songwriter lies in her ability to be at once empathetic and encouraging.
"Tell me, are you still afraid? Of what reflection might unveil"
"Don't you know that I will love you always?" she says, affirming her never-ending devotion.
Yet, it is the lyric video that makes reverie truly shine. The video is a mashup of a 2010 steppin competition at a white party in Detroit. It showcases pairs of men elegantly moving on the dance floor, twirling and dipping their partners at a moment’s notice.
Watching the men move gracefully to reverie feels intentional. anaiis encourages her listeners to move, no matter what obstacle stands in their way. Occasionally, the men have awkward moments where they seem out of sync - which is understandable as their moves are unrehearsed and reactionary to their partner. Yet, the men and reverie offer a lesson in perseverance through missteps.
At core, anaiis reaches her hand out and asks her listeners for a dance. She challenges us to be ambitious towards our goals, uninterested in what steps we take to get there. For anaiis, the movement is the only thing that matters.