Noisey previously described Arthur Moon as “a kind of experi-avant-pop you can dive deep into.”
There’s no question the Brooklyn-native, whose minimal sound is both airy and trippy, has an alluring quality.
Moon often writes her lyrics using cut-up newspaper articles, and describes the process of composing the band’s rollicking, iconoclastic arrangements as similarly collage-like.
OUT caught up with Moon in preparation for the release of her newest video “Wait a Minute” which uses collaged footage along with clips from past Pride and Dyke Marches.
OUT: What inspires your music?
Arthur Moon: In general, I’m inspired by queer pleasure, by the moments of ecstatic disorientation which can sometimes come from being outside a norm, upside-down, uncanny. And I often get excited about the idea of playing with time signature as a musical analog to that. The chorus and bridge of “Wait A Minute,” for example, introduce an odd time (five) over a more conventional time signature (four), which creates this sense of illusion, as if suddenly you don’t know where the downbeat is, even though the beat feels like it’s the same familiar pattern that it was in the verse.
The song, “Wait A Minute,” is inspired by New York, by its traditions of resistance, by its histories of darkness and violence. I imagined walking around the city as the sun was rising after having stayed up all night, delirious, with visions of the distant past and the present all mixing together. The chorus describes a moment of finally arriving at the East River at the end of the walk with the narrator feeling this heavy sense of legacy—the inherited legacy of the folks of this city who fought so hard to make this a safer place for a young queer person, and also the violent, intersecting legacies of racism, gentrification, and greed that I’m personally always reckoning with as a white person who was raised in (and continues to live in) Brooklyn.
The video was inspired by (and is comprised of) archival footage from past Pride Parades and Dyke Marches. I set these clips against mid-century advertising tropes and visions of industrial sprawl to consider the ways queer resistance is always in relationship with consumerist spectacle.
How does your queer identity intersect with your music?
Oh, hopefully in so many ways! Something I’ve been thinking about lately: I don’t read music, so I always have this nagging feeling like I’m making up the rules as I go, which is what being queer often feels like to me… at least in its best moments. Which is not to say there aren’t so many queer role models to take cues and traditions from, but rather that the thing they most joyfully model to me is their confidence at doing things their own way, their courage in resisting traditions that feel arbitrary or harmful and finding new ways of being instead.
What we can expect to see next from you?
Another single in the next few weeks. It’s one that the band and I have been working on for years -- I think it’s the most sprawling, precise, unusual thing I’ve ever made. I’m excited for people to hear it.
I just got back to the city a couple months ago from a three-month artists’ residency program in the desert where I accidentally ended up finishing writing a full-length record, so that’s coming soon as well!
Watch the premiere of "Wait a Minute" below.