New Video: Montreal’s Tess Roby Shares a Symbolic Visual for CInematic “Ideas of Space”

Montreal-based singer/songwriter and producer Tess Roby is a classically trained vocalist and self-taught synth player, who has developed and honed an exploratory sound and approach that blur the lines between pop, ambient electronica and alternative folk with an emphasis on voice as an instrument.

Roby’s sophomore album Ideas of Space is slated for an April 22, 2022 release through the Montreal-based artist’s own label SSURROUNDSS. The album reportedly sees Roby moving towards full artistic independence with the Montreal-based artist acting as songwriter, producer, musician, video director and art director.

Ideas of Space features guest spots from BRAIDS‘ Austin Tufts, Joseph Shabason and Ouri, who contribute drums, woodwinds and cello to add intricate textures to material centered around fuller-bodied production and expansive song structures. The album’s songs shift effortlessly from jubilant highs to contemplative lows, evoking the concepts of duality, which run throughout the album’s material.

The album’s first single, album title track, the mesmerizing “Ideas of Space” is centered around glistening and looping synth arpeggios, dramatic drumming paired with Roby’s achingly plaintive vocals. Sonically, “Ideas of Space” manages to recall to Kate Bush and Flourish//Perish era BRAIDS. “‘Ideas of Space’ signals the beginning of a new chapter. This song is hypnotic and sinuous, and sonically possesses a certain power and urgency,” Roby says in press notes. “When I listen to it I imagine vast landscapes, a climb, a journey. Two distinct voices speak to each other; one lost, questioning, and the other guiding the way. I wanted to visually represent those voices and the journey I was on while making this album; one of self-discovery, hardship, adventure and in the end, confidence and strength.” 

Directed by Roby, the fittingly cinematic visual that features Roby lost and wandering the forest near the Quebec coast in a white frock. Her journey is arduous and in the video’s narrative, seems to take days — with a night sleeping in the elements. Eventually she comes to a clearing. And in the clearing, she comes across a Stonehedge-like structure where she encounters herself — and is greeted with a warm and loving hug.

“The video was made with a small and incredible team composed of DOPs and editors Patrick Boivin and George Allister (VideoCompany), and producer Sarah Mackenzie,” says Tess Roby. “It was an ambitious undertaking and I’m very proud of what we have made together.”