My Baby run us through their genre-bending new album Mounaiki

Words by My Baby

Mounaiki refers to an allegorical figure, a central character in the band’s musical story. She is in part a phantom muse, a result of the combined imagination of the band members. She’s often described as, ‘a girl in the ’70s fantasising about being a flapper girl and dancer in the ’20s

After working with a theatre director for the release shows of previous album Prehistoric Rhythm, we were inspired to write and tell a story that follows the narratology of the hero’s journey, which would comprise the entire album. The hero’s journey involves a hero who goes on an adventure, overcomes a crisis and returns home transformed. A story that takes place during the course of a night, it starts in early evening as the sun sets and the final stages take place at dawn.

The songs on the album are meant to accompany the story. It also serves the purpose of developing the My Baby character we have in mind, so it doubles as a coming of age type story, a modern fable of sorts.

The My Baby character is a rebellious, defiant young woman who embarks on a quest for change, sense of purpose and liberation from the limitations of society as she perceives it. She needs to escape the suffocating environment of suburbia. She is drawn to the excitement and hustle and bustle of the inner city with its boundless possibilities.

Along the way she must overcome her doubts and struggles and forge a better understanding of of herself and the world she inhabits.

my baby mounaiki track-by-track

Take a track-by-track journey through My Baby’s latest album Mounaiki, the transcendent journey of a defiant young woman finding meaning in her world.

By The Bright Of Night

The intro theme is a foreboding dreamlike pre echo of all that will unfold. As if conjured up in the imagination of the young girl as she wakes up, she foresees the possibilities of what she can become.

She dances like a Native American on her bed, as if part of some ritual that sets her transformation in motion. We liken the theme to one that accompanies the opening credits of a film.


Mounaiki is a spirit name given to the girl by a shaman who appears in a vision or series of visions the she has. It means ‘love and will’, or the combined energy of love. She feels the inherent need to express that new found empowerment.

The character’s quest to find meaning and identity leads her to a path of renewed self discovery. She must answer her call to adventure.

For A Change

In For A Change you are viewing someone on the verge of going beyond their known limitations; that place in time where a person is ill at ease with the world and vows to make a change. That change may involve trying to become someone else. She sets off into the night.

Along the way she has time to reflect on her past experiences, relationships with family and others in her environment and the disillusionment she has felt for so long. As she treads the stomping grounds of her youth, she learns to shrug off the anxieties of her past and be content with the present.

Supernatural Aid

She feels the presence of some spiritual guidance she is about to discover. As she awaits to board a bus into the city, she meets a curious looking character with whom she goes aboard and exchanges views with.

In a hero’s tale, the protagonist will meet a mentor who will advise or aid the heroine in her quest. For us it was a unanimous decision to base this supernatural aid on Sly Stone, our musical hero and inspiration. So the song is, in part, an ode to him.


As the journey continues toward the city, the bus with its passengers comes across a homeless camp at the edge of the inner city.

We wanted to incorporate some personal experiences that we as a group had gone through. The previous year we had been involved in the making of a documentary revolving around the refugee camps on the borders of the European Union, just after the height of the crisis. The things we witnessed left an indelible impression.

Borderline is essentially a song about being on the road and experiencing the twisted irony of being free to travel everywhere you want whilst witnessing the troubles of those less fortunate as you gaze out of the window of your vehicle. Although the injustices are all too clear to see, what prevails is a combined feeling of being humbled by the strength and positivity of the people there, who have so little, and the inspiration you take from observing the importance of hope.

A brief encounter of the protagonist with a young girl, and the subsequent feeling it conjures up, symbolises the perceivable hope in the story and song.

Shadow Dancer

This is part of the character crossing the threshold. After entering the city, first being profoundly inspired by watching Pandora’s Box (a silent movie from the ’20s starring Louise Brooks) in a student cinema, she wanders the streets looking for clues.

She is confronted by her thoughts regarding her desperate search for a role model, and haunting memories of a near forgotten and forsaken love.

In The Club

By way of fate and in part through guidance from the supernatural aid, she comes across a night club. The nightclub represents the so-called belly of the whale, the final separation of the heroine’s known world and known self.

When entering the club she is recognised by the employees and is hurriedly prepared for a dance performance. As she makes her way to the stage, she comes to realise her surroundings are as if from another era and she, by way of magic, has landed herself in a nightclub in the roaring ’20s and has become a famed dancer, something from a recurring dream.

The song describes the girl’s state of being as she struggles to comprehend the new world she inhabits. Her performance is a failure and the following experience in the club leaves her desperate and anguished.

Her dream of becoming a flapper girl is now flawed, no longer matching the expectations derived from fantasy. And in that fantasy lies an image of what she aspires to be, but the club symbolises a faltered version of an ideal.

She has to deal with her disappointments and is forced to redefine what really is the core of what she wants to be…


After her failed performance, she is overcome by stage fright and plunged into a state of delirium where she is barely conscious. She is thrown into a dreamlike state where she imagines herself underwater, submerged in an otherworldly and ghostly surreality.

She sees peculiar images and silhouettes of something she might be a part of, but she struggles to comprehend their meaning. She must overcome this ordeal and depart for a newfound conquest. It is a rite of passage.


After she is taken off stage, she is intimidated and abused by the nightclub owner. This sparks a rage within her and she imagines a brutal revenge. The nightclub owner represents the tyranny of evil and corrupted men.

The song is inspired by a Native American warrior tribe chant that is directed toward the disrespecting individuals who defy Mother Nature. In the end, Mother Nature will wreak her revenge.

To Be Continued…

This song is the moment of clarity when you realise the things you pursue in order to be happy become invalid, but you aren’t able to reconcile at once.

All you are left with is the uncertainty of knowing the path you have taken is no longer the right one and you are forced to redefine the core of who you are and what you want to become.


Catch My Baby live at WOMADelaide Festival, taking place March 9-11 2019.

Mounaiki is out now.