Experimental pop artist Suno Deko crafts musical diaries as a means for self-discovery and connection. His poetic reflections on love, loss, and identity delve into and expand beyond his own life, aiming to encourage vulnerability and expression. Universally personal musings were encased in dreamy guitar-driven loops on his 2014 EP, Thrown Color. Suno Deko’s soon-to-be-released self-titled LP echoes his focus on openness with diversified orchestration and rich soundscapes surrounding deeply personal lyrics. The eclectic textures are found in his own exercise in openness, collaborating with Nicole Miglis and Zach Tetreault of Hundred Waters, (on “Swan Song”), Julie Byrne (“Alone With You”), and Jake Falby of Mutual Benefit (“Falling In,” “Altar,” and “Swan Song”) among others.
A preview stream of the record was released today along with a fantastical visual treatment for “Altar.” The Ian Clontz-directed video is a seasonally-appropriate, sepia-toned fairy tale, following the whimsical, flower-filled visual for “Swan Song” in May. Suno Deko expands on the video:
Since last November, and perhaps before, I think a lot of us have felt an almost unendurable cataclysm of heartbreaks, over and over, one after the other. How many times have you died since then? For me I died a thousand deaths over the course of making this record, some personal, some political. Reading the news is a death. Moving from Atlanta to New York, my seven year partnership ending—other deaths. But in life, death must occur to make way for new life. Thich Nhat Hanh writes so much about how the beauty of the garden would be impossible without the dirt and compost of old food and plants, how the lotus flower wouldn’t exist without the mud on the bottom of the pond. So I wanted to honor my own deaths and die and be reborn, to shed that skin and step vibrantly into a new body, or a new way of living, holding and honoring my scars but standing upright in the face of a world and a country that would probably rather erase me and those like me. Having my father be the swamp priest that sets me aloft on the river into the afterlife felt full circle, as I am the extension of him into the future and he and my mother and his father and mother and those that came before are the extension of me into the past. And to have this document where we were together to hold when I am his age and can look back and feel such joy for our love and deep friendship. On a whim, Hundred Waters stopped by the set between a show in Tallahassee and Gainesville, dashed into makeup and costume, and mother fucking frolicked with me beside a blazing bonfire. So this film is both a celebration of life and an acknowledgment of the purpose and necessity of death, of walking through fire to the other side, and of the radical act of creativity and love and friendship in an era of the greatest destruction our cultures and societies have known.
Watch the video for “Altar” and stream Suno Deko’s self-titled LP below.
Suno Deko is out 10/13 via Elestial Sound.