Q&A with susan as they release their new song ‘fake love’
Yesterday we had the pleasure of premiering the moody, cinematic music video for susan’s new single, ‘fake love’ ahead of its release today, July 2nd, 2020. See the video here.
‘fake love’ is the third drop from susan’s “suepreme” project, a six-month-long project featuring creative projects written and produced by susan that drop on the first Thursday of every month.
We jumped at the opportunity to get to know more about the inspiring and defiant artist.
Looking back, what were some of your earliest entries into music appreciation? And music production? When I was younger I was brought up in a house with so much music. My Dad used to listen to bands like Pulp whilst my Mum would play acid house and I would just sit and soak it all up. But as I grew older I started to get into Charli XCX, Robyn and Lorde and they changed the game for me. I think being able to convey such emotion through a pop song is so difficult but when pulled off, it works so amazingly. Then, when I started music production at 16, I was heavily inspired by Arca and Perfume Genius and the use of ‘unnatural’ sounds within their works. So in my early works, I was just sampling the weirdest stuff from YouTube and throwing it into a DAW – just hoping for the best haha.
What are some of your key musical influences? Ah there are so many! I love pop artists who put on a show and have hard hitting lyrics. So artists like Lorde, Robyn and Charli (XCX) inspired me in that sense. However, production wise, I take huge inspiration from artists like Christine and the Queens, Arca, Perfume Genius and Anohni.
If you could paint a picture of your unique sound, what would it look like? So my current sound in a painting would probably be an organised mess of dark colours, creating loads of texture. Something like: Jackson Pollock ‘One: Number 31’, but maybe more pretty. I literally can’t paint though, so it might not be that haha.
Take us through your songwriting process. Are there any particular steps you take when putting music together? So the songwriting process completely depends on the day. Maybe I come up with a lyrical idea and bring it to the studio, or maybe I just hope something interesting comes out of the session. Recently I’ve been working with James Casperr a lot and most of the time we just keep trying different base loops and then once we like what we’re making it – we then extend it. I always keep jotting down lyrical ideas on my phone and then when I’m in a session I pull them up and try to string my feelings together.
What gets your creative juices flowing? My creative juices are the same as my bitter juices haha. The best lyrics I’ve ever written are from bitter feelings I’ve felt. I think I don’t speak my mind enough in real life, so when I get to the studio its like therapy just exploring exactly how I felt about a situation.
As an artist, it becomes apparent that there is a huge difference between the art and the business. Is there anything about the music scene that you would personally change? I think the business side of the industry doesn’t even understand itself to be quite honest. No one has the same experience of getting into the industry. Some people get signed to a label at 12 and some don’t even get streams until their 30. It isn’t a clear path and I think artists who break the rules or come up with their own seem to engage more interest now anyway. I think people are reclaiming their power in the industry so maybe what I’d change is the encouragement for artists to take the reigns and believe in themselves more.
Tell us about the chemistry you have with your fans on stage. I find it hard to express how blessed I am to even be able to have chemistry with the people coming to my shows. It’s such a blessing that audiences come to my gigs and want to experience a show of mine. The chemistry is amazing, usually I jump off the stage and get into people’s faces, its more intimate there and you can dance, sing and cry together. It’s otherworldly the emotions you feel during a gig; I’m too blessed.
What is the most memorable response you have had to your music? I personally love it when I put on a gig from scratch. You always get a bit nervous before as you convince yourself no one will come. Then when the room packs out and you’re all dancing together, it really does feel incredible. Recently me and my friends put on a gig at 504 in Brixton and the room was filled with people who wanted to have a good time and I think we all did.
What would you like to achieve with your music? What does success look like to you? Success to me looks like being stable and respected. I just wanna pay my bills and not worry about anything. I would love to play huge shows and sell out tours, then disappear and write albums; to come back and do it all over again. Awards don’t matter to me but if you feel like giving me one, I’ll take it no worries!
What’s on your current playlist? I have been listening to so much new music recently. Chloe x Halle’s new album is incredible and that has been on repeat. I’ve rediscovered my love for Anohni as well, which is always dream. Perfume Genius’ newest album is so great too.
Breakdown the news for us: what can we expect from you in the near future? The news is that its Suepreme Season and I’m releasing the third track off the project titled ‘Fake Love’. I wrote it with my friend James Casperr and its an anthem for the fake bitches out there. There is a video coming out with as well, directed by myself and Charlie Maddocks who is the most incredible artist who helped conjure up the video from scratch. The video takes place in a flat party and the set was designed by Lara Jensen, who has the most incredible vision. The video is a party gone wrong, following the main character around a flat as they’re tripping out. It’s sick if i do say so myself. Then it’s world domination after that.