London's Suzerain have just released their second album Identity after a two year gap, but it's been well worth the wait. As lead singer Tom Pether said - "it took a while to break into something we wanted it to be. Identity is something that is difficult to grasp on a day-to-day basis, it can change but isn’t always obvious. For us, this album feels like our identity at the moment.”
Guitarist Rich Sutter continued “We wanted to strip away as much as possible. It sounds like a cliché but the more we removed, the more it sounded like us. We have a tendency to try everything we can and see what sticks and once we found the heart of the music, we stripped everything down to that one little nugget that was the identity of the track, in a way.”
Enlisting the talents of respected producer Steve Lyon (Depeche Mode, The Cure, Siouxsie Sioux), Suzerain strived to create something truly exciting, something brand new, something so very now that its process pushed their artistic vision to its very limits. As the pieces slowly fitted into place, so did the understanding that identity is the invisible carpet beneath our feet: a journey of self-discovery, and how the results of such naked introspection place us in equilibrium with the other forces of life.
“It’s not a concept album by any stretch,” says Thomas. “But it certainly does have elements of that. Our track I Know You So Well came from how we can be seen through our digital footprint in the world, and 'Hide Yourself' is about opening up to other people by not hiding yourself, by just being you. Which to be honest is something we all want to do! So there were many things that crossed over in actually defining Suzerain on this record.”
“We recorded so many songs that didn’t make the album,” continues Rich. “We decided that if anything sounded like another band could have done it, we didn’t want to include it. Suzerain music had to be something that could only be done by us. And embracing that side of us was both a blessing and a curse! But the result is that anyone listening to Identity would have to grab a whole group of genres to figure out where we belong.”