Suzerain – Good Day
Ever since being tempted by a four track sampler in 2011 for their soon after released debut album Midnight In The Drawn City, UK alternative/electro rock quintet Suzerain has increasingly impressed and seduced as their invention and sound continually evolved into new imagination igniting explorations. Their album was a striking incitement of adventurous creativity and ingenious temptation which the following 2012 EP A Mirror Now pushed further. The recent release of the single Dark Dark/ Manhattan single suggested there was a new inventive drama and ingenuity emerging in the band’s music, something the Good Day EP now more than confirms and stretches again. The new encounter is an inescapable web of addiction forging endeavour, a majestic temptress of ears and emotions cloaked in dark shadows and evocative cinematic persuasion, and quite irresistible.
London based Suzerain linked up with double Grammy Award winning producer Steve Lyon (Depeche Mode, Siouxsie Sioux, The Cure) for the recording of Good Day, a release which is bred revelling in the expansive depths and varied originality of their music. Fresh from a German tour with Livingston and in the process of completing their new album for a 2015 release, Suzerain take little time seducing thoughts and appetite on Good Day as its title track fizzes in ears first. Keys caustically simmer first as the jabbing beats of Ben Howe rattle the senses, their union swiftly joined by the ever impressive vocals of Thomas Pether. It is a wholly magnetic proposition, especially as the guitar of Rich Summers places coaxing melodies within the sonic web cast by keyboardist Matt Constantine.
As is so often the case with the band’s songs, there is a familiarity toying with the passions but from no definable source other than Suzerain having a distinctive sound and presence. The similarly enticing velvety bassline from Mike Smith adds shadowed drama which the keys stoke further with their pungent colours. The song is stunning, every twist a stroking visual and emotions intrusion which Constantine’s cello craft only accentuates, whilst the at times seemingly scathing or sarcastic tones of the vocals and the enslaving rhythms culture an inescapable anthemic bait.
As exhilarating as the song ends its successor Try Your Best starts, the cello of Constantine flirting with raw expression and riveting drama to excite the imagination before bass and guitars add their similarly provocative textures to the delicious weave. As Pether opens up his rich croon, the initial elements continue to nag magnetically, their repetitious toxicity pure virulence around the coaxing call of the vocals. There is an open whiff of Trent Reznor to the song at times but again it is another track which radiates uniqueness and melancholic ingenuity.
Third track is a remix from Touchy Subject of Manhattan, a haunting version of one half of the last single which is as brooding in its tone and emotion as it is resonating in electronic exploration. At times Numan-esque like, the song is a fascinating proposition which may not light the passion as the previous songs but has ears and imagination fully bound in its provocative landscape.
Final track is the acoustically sculpted Hell Of A Way To Go, an emotive stroll of melancholic strings and skittish beats providing an elegant canvas for the vocals to shed their dark reflection and radiant prowess over. As well as making a mesmeric end to an outstanding release, the song casts another enthralling aspect to the enterprising songwriting and creative emprise of Suzerain.
Suzerain is one of the UK’s most exciting and adventurous bands, and after the release of Good Day, it would not be a surprise if also one of its most talked about.
The Good Day EP is released on November 30th