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  • Writer's pictureOn Repeat

Faux Real Get "Faux Maux" With New Single, Sign to City Slang

Faux Real Cover Art
Photo Credit: Sarah Pardini

Visionary Avant-Pop duo Faux Real has unveiled the new single, “Faux Maux,” available now via their new deal with legendary independent label, City Slang. A starry-eyed ode to staying in and logging out, the track (pronounced /fō mō/) is joined by a self-directed official music video, featuring cinematography by longtime collaborator Léo Schrepel and streaming now on YouTube.

“Faux Maux” sees Faux Real – a.k.a. Los Angeles-based Franco-American brothers Virgile and Elliott Arndt – shining brighter here than ever before, with melodies that never land where one would expect, two-part turnarounds, plastic splashes of sound design, and irresistible vocal hooks. Forever expanding their faux-cabulary, the Arndts have melded a particularly 21st Century malaise with a layer of sarcastic French wordplay, with “Faux Maux” quite literally translating to “fake aches.”

Initially conceived in a pre-COVID world, the song’s key message of the phone as an emblem of our times (“Call me up / I’ll turn you down”) has since piled on several new coats of meaning, with its themes of isolation and social anxiety also echoing the environmental illness of Julianne Moore’s character in Todd Haynes’ Safe (1995). As they set forth on their new era, Faux Real invites us into their singular playhouse, opening the door to the idiosyncratic and ingenious home they have been building from the inside out.

“Faux Maux” follows last year’s acclaimed single, “Full Circle,” joined by a disquieting – yet captivatingly choreographed – official music video, directed by Faux Real and streaming now on YouTube. With a meticulous new sound favoring ultra-digital software instruments, brutalist production, and the duo’s long-standing knack for hugely catchy vocal melodies, the track was met by applause from media outlets around the world outlets with EARMILK hailing it as “another off-beat, alt-pop gem…‘Full Circle’ fuses organic, melodic beats with dynamic drum hits. Hints of synth creep up to the catchiest of choruses, slipping between the brothers' vocals, complimenting each other seamlessly with double tracks and stacks…The video is equally as stirring, with the pair's quick moves in time to the beat reaching out of the screen.

Elliott and Virgile Arndt founded Faux Real in 2018, blending post-punk, glam rock, and fresh beats to fashion a truly inimitable musical experience. From their increasingly accomplished studio output to mesmerizing, unprecedented live performances, Faux Real invite the audience to join them on an enthralling post-realist expedition through contemporary pop culture with razor-edged satire, inspired boy band choreography, and a charged sensuality that has quickly earned them a fervent fan following that includes among their number such iconic stars as Duran Duran, Paramore, and Wet Leg. Now, with “Faux Maux” – and whispers of their long-awaited debut album arriving at last in 2024 – Faux Real continues to gleefully ignore boundaries and barriers, assuring the journey is as exhilarating as the ultimate destination.


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