In 2021, singer-songwriter and guitarist, Ariane Roy was presented with Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame’s Slaight Music Emerging Songwriter Award. Now, although the first, say, 13 times I listened to “Ta main,” it was based on pure vibes alone. After translating the lyrics to English (I do not speak nor understand French– well, maybe a tiny bit now), I see why she was presented with this award.
“Ta main,” or “your hand,” is a song written about desire. In the song, Roy describes an exciting, intimate encounter backed by jaunty, infectiously dance-inducing instrumentals. The first verse is pure poetry, even as poorly translated to English: “Your trembling hand / A labyrinth on my skin / All the paths it walks / Get lost on my bones.” The undertones of enchantment in Roy’s voice, the melody, and instrumentals in “Ta main” culminate a perfect spring song.
The single was released in October of 2020 with a beautifully whimsical music video directed by Adrian Villagomez. In the video, we see stunning, sprawling shots of varying landscapes, sexually-spurring shots of lovers and friends, breaking tides and dancers in lobster costumes.
In February of this year, Roy released her debut album, medium plaisir, or “medium pleasure.” In tandem with the album, Roy released Le Grand Plaisir, an incredibly creative visual for the album, also directed by Villagomez. In the 20-minute video, Roy performs in a warmly-lit room with her equally talented band on a circular stage surrounded by walls of curtains.
Performing 6 tracks from the album, Roy and Villagomez create a rollercoaster of an experience. At one point, during “Le paradis de l’amour,” the room is invaded by lovers in rain ponchos, enjoying the physical spoils of human connection. Later, during “Apprende encore,” the lovers return, sans ponchos, and strip the musicians of their instruments, turning the performance into an underwear-clad dance party.