“The largest hazard is ourselves”


Susanne Sundfør has spoken to NME about her new album ‘Blómi’, and the way it was impressed by discovering distraction within the outdated world away from the political divisions of contemporary society.

The acclaimed Norwegian singer-songwriter and Röyksopp collaborator launched her sixth album on Friday (April 28), following on from 2017’s acclaimed ‘Music For Individuals In Bother‘.

With the predecessor impressed by Sundfør’s personal emotional battles reflecting the planet in peril, she stated that her new file appears for mild within the darkness as a substitute – not that the world is in an any higher scenario.

“Are we extra in hassle now than in 2017? I believe we’re, however it’s extra about polarisation than the state of the world anymore,” she advised NME. “There are loads of issues that might go fallacious, however the largest hazard is ourselves and our capability to have civilised conversations and hold attempting to speak throughout political realms.

“Personally, I’ve fallen out with folks as a result of we’ve had totally different opinions on political issues and I discover that actually unhappy. On that time, we’re in a worse state than when ‘Music For Individuals In Bother’ got here out.”

One of many major causes for societal divisions, argued Sundfør, is the misinformation and tradition wars created by mainstream media.

“I began trying into issues and got here to the conclusion that the world is run by lizards,” she laughed. “I’m joking in fact, however we’re in a a lot worse place it appears. For some motive, we consider extra within the media in the present day than we used to. I grew up with folks taking the media with a grain of salt, however now I really feel like in the present day we ask much less questions.

“I discover that actually worrying, and I believe it’s shocking that we don’t discuss extra about that. I perceive that it’s within the shadows of this battle we’re going by way of in Europe.”

This mentality has left to divisions even inside political spectrums, she argued. “I believe the left is admittedly struggling proper now as a result of it’s turning into polarised from inside,” stated Sundfør. “I discover that actually unhappy. Elements of it have develop into fairly inflexible and to some extent puritanical in character. I believe all of us agree on loads of issues, however they see enemies all over the place that aren’t essentially there.

“It’s this angst that we’re going by way of. It’s additionally the results of what Trump did in America and all of those political waves coming from over there.”

Pointing to inspiration from writers together with Michael Shellenberger, Marija Gimbutas, David Graeber and David Wengrow, Sundfør defined how she wished to encourage folks to search for fact much less in “media in collaboration with governments” and extra in easy and common concepts.

“The album is about attempting to revive the mom faith which may have been the unique faith on the daybreak of civilisation,” she stated. “[Marija Gimbutas] writes about this early agricultural society which was in Europe earlier than the Indo-Europeans. They lived peacefully and have been matriarchal, focussing on the mom and baby. That was the centre of society. You continue to have these societies and so they’re so harmonic. I simply wish to have fun that type of society and the mythology of these cultures on this album.”

She continued: “A variety of us are actually craving to have native communities once more as a result of every thing has develop into so globalised and digitised. Socialising is thru screens, and I believe that’s detrimental to our well being. We’re a really social species and that’s how we advanced. We’re depending on one another and I don’t assume a display screen can change bodily contact with a human being.”

Whereas her native Norway is usually praised for a way of ‘group’ and social democracy, Sundfør was eager to emphasize that her fellow Norwegians have been “simply folks like everybody.”

“We’re a younger nation, constructed on these very social democratic ideas,” she stated. “I’ve this sense that loads of Norwegians assume, ‘Everyone deserves the identical, so I ought to try to get as a lot as doable out of this.

“There’s a bizarre combine of claiming that you simply’re a socialist but additionally attempting to exploit the cow for no matter it’s value. It’s a broad generalisation and never about each single Norwegian, however generally I really feel like that rosey-eyed view of Norway isn’t all the time appropriate.”

A way of nationwide identification does run all through ‘Blómi’, nevertheless – drawing upon historical Norse language and mythology.

“The Norse titles are a hyperlink to my grandpa, who’s on the duvet,” she revealed. “He was a linguist and research useless languages originating from the Center East. He’s fluent in Hebrew and Arabic. He’s tremendous gifted and was tremendous controversial in Norwegian academia. My mom is a retired linguist as nicely, and she or he studied English and German. We’re a dorky nerdy language household, so it’s a celebration of that, however the album can be about roots.”

The concept of roots and group led to a extra “natural” sound on the file, she stated, constructing on the people sounds of ‘Music For Individuals In Bother’ and a distant cry from the dancefloor leaning 2015 album ‘Ten Love Songs’.

‘Ten Love Songs’ grew to become my hottest file, however it was extra like an experiment for me,” she stated. “I wished to make a pop album as a result of earlier than I had made extra folk-inspired music. It was extra like a detour, however that’s not the way it’s seen as a result of ‘Ten Love Songs’ is seen as such a central a part of my profession.”

She continued: “We’re shedding our place on the earth and every thing is being taken over by expertise,” she stated of what impressed the sounds of her new file. “There’s one thing to be stated of trying again at custom. Not in a conservative manner, however honouring what our ancestors realized by way of the centuries.

“Not solely trying ahead by way of progress, however bringing our heritage with us as we transfer on into this unusual, technological world that we’re shifting into.”

Nevertheless, followers would have loved Sundfør’s extra pop-oriented moods lately by way of her continued long-running collaboration with Röyksopp – lending her vocals to numerous songs throughout their ‘Profound Mysteries’ trilogy.

“They’re beautiful – it’s such an honour to work with them and so they’re so gifted,” she stated of her relationship with the dance duo. “All of us have these totally different traits in us. Generally we wish to dance and generally we wish to do extra soul-searching. Perhaps white folks aren’t all the time that snug on the dancefloor, however the urge is all the time inside us.”

Relating to upcoming reside dates, Sundfør is hoping to announce gigs within the US, UK and Europe quickly after a run of Norwegian dates – the place she’ll be elevating the natural components of the album and “appreciat[ing] the worth of discovering a human beat collectively.”

“I’m bringing 14 musicians with me on stage,” she stated. “I’m bringing six singers on high of instrumentalists who’re additionally singing. There will probably be loads of vocals. “Occurring stage and taking part in issues 100 per cent reside is a lot of a greater expertise for everybody.”

“We’ll play songs from the brand new album, but additionally the best hits. It’s going to be a pleasant combination.”

‘Blómi’ is out now. Susanne Sundfør embarks on a run of tour dates in Norway this summer time, together with an look at Oslo’s Øya Competition in August alongside the likes of Blur, Boygenius, Pusha T, Wizkid and extra.


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