Can a girl get a witness? Because the mesmerizing moves Mahaut Mondino slides into during this video for “The Great Elements,” which is on her debut EP out in early 2015, hold on like temptation. I’m not talking long spikey strides across the boards like Beyoncé, tho there’s nothing wrong with that, or gyrating, power moments like Gaga, tho I enjoy those too, I mean stationary from the waist up flow that speaks directly by rooting you to the spot. With snake-charmer hands tipped by blood-red nails—pointed just enough to make you pay attention—and a staccato snap to her neck that might suggest an Egyptian spell is in the offing, it’s really all held in her eyes.
This lady’s got a soulful vibe that even as I was listening/watching I felt confused that she might be the love child of Nina Simone and Etta James during a smoky night in a dark cafe. And understanding that Mahaut is in fact Paris-born of photographer Jean-Baptiste, and has been soaking in the celeb world since birth, I see how it is that she’s come by her multilayered abilities. As we cross cultures, timezones and languages to find out how the world works, I welcome the likes of Mahaut to give me a peek of what’s to come.