Mae Deline’s “Black Hole” is a Galaxy-themed Masterpiece

Mae Deline

It’s not hyperbole to say that Mae Deline’s new song “Black Hole” is a work of art.

Musically, it has the pensive feel of French composer Erik Satie’s Gymnopédie #1 – and the poetic metaphors and intimate vocal are right up there with Brit legend Kate Bush at her best.

Like many other artists, Deline hit some career speed-bumps during Covid. Her pre-pandemic work was wildly eclectic, from the naughty neo-punk of “Wedding Cake” to the trippy humor and intoxicating dancefloor chorus of “Multiply.” But her most stunning pre-Covid track is “Graffiti”, a hauntingly beautiful song with a remarkable point of view. I can’t name another song that does a better job of conveying what a toxic relationship actually feels like from a woman’s perspective. It’s eye-opening, heartbreaking and unforgettable.

Listening to Mae Deline’s “Black Hole” is like gazing through NASA’s James Webb telescope, looking not at stars but at love relationships that are infinitely mysterious.

Your singing and piano skills are stellar! Did you take voice and piano lessons growing up?

Stellar is a good word choice given the celestial theme. Actually, the piano in the track “Black Hole” was performed and arranged by the very talented Ben Darwish, who also produced the song! The chords, melody and lyrics were all written by me, but I actually only learned the piano a few years ago. I am much more proficient at the guitar, which I have been playing since the age of 15. So I hired Ben to bring the piano to life and I am over the moon with how he arranged it. I think he really captured the emotional desperation and loneliness I was going for in the song.  

Who are some of your favorite artists, both current and all-time?

Jewel was the first CD I ever bought with my own money at the age of 7 or 8. I was inspired by her unique voice, poetic lyrics and acoustic style, which informed my songwriting in a big way. In my teens I was into a lot of classic, psychedelic rock from the 1960s, as my dad was an absolute Beatles fanatic. A lot of my chords and melodies have a bit of a McCartney influence and a Doors vibe. In my twenties I became obsessed with Björk and in 2016 I released an ethereal EP called Nautilus which was very much inspired by Björk, Kate Bush and Laurie Anderson. Today, I draw aesthetic and artistic inspiration from FKA Twigs, Caroline Polachek, Christine and The Queens and Aldous Harding and their use of unorthodox melodies and experimental, artistic music videos.

What’s the backstory on “Black Hole”? What were you thinking and feeling when you wrote it?

This song was inspired by a past relationship that wasn’t meeting my emotional needs. I craved more intimacy and connection than my partner was capable of giving me. I felt pushed away and kept out and the pain of that rejection felt so catastrophic. I was ashamed of the magnitude and force of that feeling – a feeling of abandonment I’ve carried since my childhood. I saw in my mind this black hole that was going to destroy the very thing I feared losing. The song came from a very real, hurting place. Something I want people to take away from the song is that it’s a beautiful and powerful thing to crave love and connection with the force of a black hole. We all need human connection and intimacy and when we don’t have our needs met, it can be destructive. 

I love your versatility, from the heartfelt emotion of “Graffiti” to the wicked humor of “Wedding Cake.” How do you manage to excel at so many types of writing?

That’s really sweet of you to say! I have two opposing sides: The side that takes everything very seriously and the side that takes nothing seriously. I think it’s a good range to have. 

What producer are you working with on the upcoming eleven singles…and when will you release the album?

I’m working with three different producers at the moment because I couldn’t find just one to fit my entire catalog into their busy schedules and I didn’t want to wait. Ben Darwish produced two songs: “Black Hole” and “Shiver”. Ben Mironer produced “You” and “Black Magic” – and Jon Joseph produced the other 7 songs. I’m not sure on the order yet, but I will be releasing one song a month for the rest of the year on the 23rd of each month. (Because 23 is my destiny number; I see it everywhere. And it’s 2023. This is my year!)

You attended the prestigious California Institute of the Arts (Cal Arts), correct?

Yes, and one of my goals for this year is to get back into painting and somehow incorporate it into my music. I’d like to create paintings inspired by particular songs and have a showing of my art while I perform in the gallery. I’ve always been inspired by the idea of creating immersive experiences.


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