Falling down the rabbit hole of social media and your own thoughts – a feeling we all know too well.
When the Belgian singer-songwriter Moli was failing to fall asleep in a hostel in London and fell down that rabbit hole, she ended up writing a song about it. With “Insomnia“, she deals with feeling stressed out, not being able to sleep and sleep paralysis.
She says: “I wrote Insomnia while I was in London. At the time I was staying in a youth hostel. Always a bit of a hit and miss. I was very used to it as I nearly always stayed in hostels on writing trips and had had some great experiences but some not so great. This one particular night, I had been assigned a shared dorm on the ground floor and my bed was on the top bunk situated right next to the window where this one bright light shined directly onto my bed in my face. It was summer, the room was super hot so we also needed to keep the window open and people were being super noizy outside, I couldn’t sleep at all. I was lying there tossing and turning all night and anxiety creped up on me. I spent a while on my phone going through the news and social media and that stressed me out even more. I went down a rabbit hole of thoughts about life, had a little existential crisis. I was in the studio the next few days and felt inspired by that experience among other sleepless nights and the nights where I have sleep paralysis to write Insomnia.”
“Insomnia” is part of Moli‘s recently released mini-album, Préface.
“Préface is the result of my musical journey over the last few years,” says Moli about her sophomore mini-album. And a journey it is indeed; from having written songs for some of the biggest names in Dance Music to exploring the worlds of pop and soul in her own music, Moli doesn’t shy away from taking inspiration from a diverse pool of genres and experiences.
Having worked with many writers and producers has inspired the Berlin-based singer and helped her find and understand her creative vision. One of those collaborators is the American producer Chris Zane, who Moli met two years ago and has worked with ever since. “We clicked and I feel like he really understands my vision”, she says.
Albeit catchy and groovy, Moli’s songs always carry a thoughtful message, often based on personal experiences. She sees writing as a way of dealing with those experiences, which is why including lyrics in the French language is of such big importance to the young singer. Born in Belgium and raised by British and South African parents, she grew up in a bilingual household speaking both English and French.
‘Préface’ features seven songs, including ‘Jacuzzi’ and ‘Shapeshifting’, which were released earlier this year. The mini-album was released on 26th March via Embassy of Music.
A little more about Moli
Following the release of her first solo single ‘Didn’t Mean To’ in 2018, which was described as “shattering the ambiguities of modern romance” by The Line of Best Fit, it was clear straight away that Moli was set for a career as both an artist and a songwriter. Her first EP ‘Résumé’, released via Majestic Casual later that year, pushed the 19-year-old even further into the limelight. With Clash Magazine calling it “bright, lively pop music, where each song makes a deep and lasting impression, a clever lyrical touch that seems to nail it down for each listener.”
Following on from Résumé, Moli released two standalone singles ‘Nowhere’ and ‘Lonely Nights’ in early 2019. On a trip to London that year, Moli met her current producer Chris Zane, known for his work with Passion Pit, Friendly Fires, Bat For Lashes and Chloe Howl. The two formed a natural musical bond, and combined with Moli’s admiration for the glamorous aesthetic of the ‘80s and the icons of French cinema of the ‘70s, the collaboration resulted not only in the new tracks ‘On the Weekend’ and ‘Something I Said’, but also laid the foundation for her upcoming sophomore project, ‘Préface’, a seven-track EP which is set for release in early 2021.
Born in Belgium to an English mother and a South African father, Moli grew up in a small town in Belgium speaking French at school and English at home, surrounded by the humour, the culture of tea, cookies, and the Anglo-Saxon musical heritage of her parents.
At the time, Moli was afraid to sing in French: “It’s a delicate language, not only for singing but also for writing.” Today, she is confident in both languages and makes it her main asset. “French is a big part of my life. It’s my second soul and I want to bring it into my music to make it as authentic as possible.”
As well as writing her own music, Moli has also written and co-written many critically-acclaimed pop and dance hits, such as Topic and A7S’s ‘Breaking Me’, ‘Let go’ by the ItaloBrothers and Kiesza, ‘Love to Go’ by Lost Frequencies, Kelvin Jones, Zonderling, to name a few.
In her own songs, however, Moli combines pop, soul, sensitive rhymes, and personal and committed lyrics; she is both elegant and irreverent and her music is a clever mix of indie and mainstream pop, extremely accessible with relatable stories. Sensitive and emotional, she embraces her weaknesses, doubts and anxieties and uses them as a creative force, integrating them into her artistic process.
“I’m growing to be ok with my own vulnerability, okay with feeling, okay with my obsession over sometimes stupid little things. But I’m learning to defend myself and to fight for what I believe in. Being independent but being emotional, and not being ashamed of my emotions,” she says.