While their first two albums, Ghost Box and High Line, explored panoramas that evoked the American West as well as the cosmic beyond, Promise–the third and latest album by SUSS on Northern Spy Records–takes a more personal journey that maps out the rocky terrain of the American dream. Written, recorded, and mixed during the pandemic quarantine, the members of SUSS used their music to come to grips with concepts such as “promise” and “hope” and what they could still mean in this day and age.
On Promise, the NYC quartet creates sonic landscapes using pedal steel, baritone guitar, ebow, harmonium, synths, loops and other Americana instrumentation. Drawing on influences from their younger years, SUSS has created music that evokes early psychedelic Pink Floyd, Kraftwerk and the seminal soundtrack work of John Barry. The result, which they call “pastoral psychedelicism,” is a music that is beautiful, haunting and challenging.