Feature, News, Reviews

Susanna Shares New Single “The Vampire” – New Album “Baudelaire & Orchestra” due July 28th via SusannaSonata

July 20, 2023
Photo credit: Tomas Lauvland Pettersen

SUSANNA

Shares new single “The Vampire”
Album ‘Baudelaire & Orchestra’ due July 28th via SusannaSonata

Norwegian singer songwriter Susanna is sharing new single “The Vampire” from upcoming album ‘Baudelaire & Orchestra‘, which is set for release July 28th via SusannaSonata.

The full orchestra joins me on ‘The Vampire’ in addition to both Stina Stjern and Anita Kaasbøll on vocals.It’s a dramatic poem, about emotional abuse and forms of addiction. The rhythm is essential to this song, with the drive and intensity. I think the orchestra arrangement has turned out gorgeous, with the horn sections, orchestral percussion and strings.” Susanna says.

The video for ‘The Vampire’ in orchestra-version is sort of an animated lyrics video, with a lot of texture and movements, raw and gritty. It turns red like a vampire’s kiss. It’s made by Sigurd Ytre-Arne, who has done a lot of live videos for me before.”

Susanna is a vital composer, continuing to draw the audience’s attention to these gripping landscapes, filled with volatility and fierce characteristics. Every release unveiled embraces this innovative direction and contemporary essence, Susanna establishes this vivid journey in all their compositions and “The Vampire” reinforces that imaginative structure filled with plentiful hooks. With the orchestra joining forces, the dramatic course explodes.

Pre-order album here:https://bit.ly/BaudelaireOrchestraOrder

On Baudelaire & Orchestra, Susanna is joined by Oslo’s incredible, forward thinking KORK orchestra. The radio orchestra of NRK (Norway’s national broadcaster) is known for its progressive approach, diversity and willingness to tackle challenging and contemporary music of all types. The music was arranged by Jarle G. Storløkken, with contributions from innovative composer Jan Martin Smørdal –who was awarded the Nordheim Prize in 2022. Christian Eggen – one of Norway’s top conductors – leads the orchestra, while it was produced and mastered by Deathprod. 

Susanna’s intense relationship with the poetry of the French symbolist has so far led to two albums and an EP, and a string of rapturously received concerts. It all started with Baudelaire and Piano (2020), an intimate set of 10 songs with just Susanna alone at her piano. Last year came Elevation, featuring 11 more Baudelaire jewels. The material blossomed into a collaborative enterprise with Stina Stjern and Delphine Dora, combining tape, spoken word and song. 

Like Baudelaire, Susanna’s music probes the edges of desire, and confronts the simultaneous wonder and meaningless of existence. Baudelaire is often considered one of the first modern poets, whose urban observations frequently dipped into fantasy, sensuality, fevered imaginings and eerie horror. Susanna’s selection of texts from his masterwork The Flowers of Evil (translated by Anthony Mortimer) covers the full spectrum of Baudelaire’s conflicted expression.

The result completes a trilogy of Baudelaire-related releases by Susanna. The project is a unique musical conversation spanning centuries and disciplines; a time travelling adventure that moves between creative dimensions, different musical genres, the cosmic and the microscopic. The addition of the orchestra, plus Stina Stjern weaving in extra textures on cassettes and recorders, and vocals by experimental singer Anita Kaasbøll (Bladed, Feathered Friends, Trondheim Voices), bring out the full spectrum of Baudelaire’s strange universe: a lush and sensuous garden where snakes lurk in the undergrowth and poisonous flowers may afflict the unwary. 

Baudelaire & Orchestra adds new music for cassette-tapes by Stina Stjern alongside three songs from Elevation and five from Baudelaire & Piano. Susanna was entranced by the multilayered texts, with their “many colours, shades, moods and emotions”. Susanna was also drawn to Baudelaire’s worldview, which addresses questions of religion and morality with a certain force and elegance.

Susanna says: ‘I’ve been wanting to develop this material since the first Baudelaire album. There’s a bit more complexity in the harmonies and the rhythms than you can hear in the bare piano arrangements. I think these songs have become even more accessible in these orchestral versions, and I hope many more people will be able to enjoy the music.’

Norwegian artist Susanna is the woman behind former Susanna and the Magical Orchestra, and a creator of bold, original and enrapturing music, capable of building worlds to lose yourself in and a collaborator with artists such as Jenny Hval and Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy. Alongside this Susanna has also long been an interpreter of other people’s works, from AC/DC to Dolly Parton, Joy Division to Henry Purcell. Susanna has an ability to transform these works into music that sits comfortably next to her own work while never losing what made the original – and the original composer of the song – so special.

Based in Oslo, the singer/songwriter and artist Susanna formed her Susanna and the Magical Orchestra duo in 2000 for exquisite, minimalistic interpretations of pop songs, both mainstream and leftfield. Since 2007 her songwriting has travelled in multiple directions, from her Meshes of Voice project with transgressive singer Jenny Hval, to settings of Norwegian poet Gunvor Hofmo, and the collaboration with new music group Ensemble neoN on The Forester (2013). Go Dig My Grave (2018) was called ‘a wondrous, haunting bunch of covers’ (Uncut). 2019’s Garden of Earthly Delights was praised as ‘brilliant and compelling’ in the international press. 2020’s Baudelaire & Piano received 4/5 stars in The Guardian, Irish Times in addition to being Critic’s Choice in The Financial Times.

She is a three-times winner of Norwegian Grammys for previous releases. Superfan Bonnie Prince Billy’s recent Wolf of the Cosmos release was a cover of the whole of her 2007 album Sonata Mix Dwarf Cosmos. She releases her music on her own label SusannaSonata. 

In these exquisite orchestra settings, the poetry of Baudelaire has encountered its own ‘magical orchestra’.

Baudelaire & Orchestra tracklist: 
1. Sarcophagi
2. Obsession
3. The Ghost
4. Burial
5. Heavy Sleep
6. Destruction
7. Rewind
8. Longing for Nothingness,
9. Alchemy of Suffering
10. Elevation
11. The Vampire 

https://susannamagical.com/

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