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Marlaena Moore Dusts Off An Old Groove at the Right Time With “Unfaded” 

The Montreal-based songwriter's latest video single finds her embracing her own naïveté. 

by Ben Boddez

With her first single since 2022’s “Pacer,” Montreal-based singer-songwriter Marlaena Moore’s latest video single finds her lost in a sea of uncertainty – but that might not be the worst thing in the world. Featuring a guitar-driven instrumental co-produced by Moore’s partner, Preoccupations guitarist Scott “Monty” Munro, the track is a slow build to a grand finale where the dynamic musical duo turn the amps all the way up.

Accompanied by a video directed by Sasha Khalimonova and shot by Evangelos James Desborough, the video finds Moore slowly preparing for a frigid winter walk full of unexpected interactions with passersby. The walk ultimately morphs – through a truly impressive cinematic transition – into a raucous crowd-surfing scene at a concert. From a lyrical standpoint, Moore has been working on the track for quite a long time.  

“I started writing this song back in 2017, a very aimless and lost time in my life,” she says. “I feel like I’m still waiting to fully know what this song is ‘about,’ but I guess I would have to describe it as owning my naive-ness. I don’t have it all figured out. I’m not perfect. I still don’t know what I’m doing.”

We caught up with Moore below to talk about “Unfaded,” her current jams, and navigating life with naïveté. 

What was it like being on set to shoot this video?

Very scrappy and heartfelt. Sasha [Khalimonova] and Evan [Desborough] are incredibly meticulous filmmakers and put everything into anything they make. That’s why/how they keep getting even better at their craft. A lot of the shots required many extras and I was so touched by everyone who came out and gave their time for this video. The crowd surfing shot needed some extra creativity – because of the way the shot was set up, I couldn’t literally be surfed (movie magic), so the way we rigged it up was even more trippy in the end. Running into snags can always be a blessing in disguise.

You’ve mentioned that this is an older song – why did you feel like now was the time to release it?

Some of it is just the nature of writing. It takes certain songs longer to find their proper shape. I had the melody for a long time before I was able to find good words for it. I finished the song right after me and Monty [Scott Munro of Preoccupations] got together. Another part of it is just the nature of releasing music these days. I would love to write a song and instantly have it recorded and put out to the world, but it seems like it’s not the way it works, I suppose. Maybe I’ll challenge myself to do that for next time.

What have you been listening to lately?

A lot of Land of Talk. My partner Monty just went on tour with them and after seeing them play, I couldn’t get all those tunes out of my head. It’s such incredible songwriting and Lizzy’s vocals are devastating (the good kind). I’ve also been rediscovering Edie Brickell & the New Bohemians of “What I Am” fame. That whole album is fantastic: joyous, clever and intricate.

You’ve described this song as being about “owning your naïve-ness” – what are the best and worst parts about being naïve?

The best part is that you never seem to lose hope when things feel hopeless. The worst part is that cynicism always seems to get the last word in. 

What’s next for Marlaena Moore? Anything else you’d like us to know?

More tunes on the way … or not! I can’t officially say.