Two figures in gray T-shirts sway hypnotically, mirroring each other, in the video to Alycia Lang‘s lilting new new video, “Projector.” 

Lang, a singer-songwriter from the California Bay area, moved to the area last June. The cross-country life change was sparked, she says, by the process of making the video, which was shot in a house in Durham. While she was in town filming, Lang’s friends Andy Stack and Jenn Wasner of Wye Oak suggested she move here. A few months later, she did, moving into the ramshackle house next door to the little blue house that “Projector” was shot in. Lang joins a creative legacy: Over the years, both houses have played host to scores of Triangle bands.

The single was released in 2019, though production delays have kept the music video under wraps until now. 

The song, Lang says, is about being privy to someone else’s idea of themself—to an archetype that may or may not be true, or helpful. It’s a complicated relational idea to convey in a video, but the narrative nevertheless shines through in a dance that Lang says she choreographed on the spot. Madeline Kenney shot the video, while Durham’s Carley McCready Bingham serves as a second dancer. 

“The video visually expands on the relationship between people caught in the dance of playing along with each other,” Lang says. “But ultimately, one of them just kind of calls the situation out for what it is.”

As a teenager, Lang trained at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. That training is apparent in her confident vocal range, which channels both silvery yearning and commanding assertion. In “Projector,” lilting atmospherics give way to Lang’s clear-as-a-bell voice, as she sings “Careful who you love, careful you who you trust, careful who you let down.”

Watch the video for “Projector” below. 

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