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Moodswings EP cover image

New Video: Maxine Ashley

We all know it’s rude to stare. But you’d be lying if you said you’ve never had that moment on the tube where you catch that stranger’s eye one too many times. Some people are just fascinating to look at, and, I’m going to put it out there; if Maxine Ashley was in my carriage I think I’d be in line for a restraining order.

There is something decidedly intoxicating about the Bronx-bred maverick whose sassy no-bullshit attitude and knowing dark eyes seem far older than her meagre 21 years. After her youtube cover videos rocketed to an immense 3.6 million hits, she caught the eye of Pharell Williams, who signed her to his label i am OTHER (Universal). Just at the fresh beginning of her career, Maxine seems like an unpolished (in the best sense of the word) and un-commercialised Rhianna or Jessie J, with a rebellious attitude and no fear of experimentation.

She has her own ideas about what she wants to do and how she wants to do it. When advised by the industry to desist from her collaboration with Lady Tragik’s video ‘Unforgettable’, which featured Maxine scantily clothed, dancing provocatively with the lesbian artist and film director, Maxine did it anyway, and on top of that, hired Tragik to direct her new video ‘By Your Side’, which is a huge success.

Filmed in black and white, on the busy streets of Manhattan, the Brooklyn Bridge and the Bronx, Tragik captures Maxine in her own element and neighborhood. The video is stark and unadulterated; long spanning shots of two lovers walking around New York city, united in their isolation. Although unadorned and straightforward, the video is in no way compromised by it’s simplicity: perhaps it’s the whole Maxine-is-just-so-bloody-watchable thing again. And it’s safe to say that model Louis Zayas isn’t so hard on the eye either.

The video perfectly captures the beauty and emotion the song delivers, with Maxine’s effortless vocals soaring over smooth jazz lounge beats, and, since much of her previous work has been based around covers, the new video gives us a sense of the real Maxine and what she’s all about. Take a peek:

Maxine’s debut EP ‘Moodswings’ will be released on Itunes September 22nd.

- Georgia Rose

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