Saro at the Satellite on 11/21

Special guest headliner Saro, just announced for We Found New Music’s showcase at the Satellite on Nov. 21st, buy your tickets HERE!

Humans like to categorize. It’s not necessarily our fault, but the brain naturally attempts to compartmentalize the world around us. By color, alphabet, numerics, genre, sex, race, age, blah blah blah the boxes are endless and we’ve all preyed upon and fallen prey to categorization. I don’t need to step on my soapbox declaring the dangers of limiting a person to a category (I’m sure you’re all well aware that’s not chill), instead I’d like to focus on what can happen when someone intentionally obliterates their box, transcending into an uncharted sphere of self-expression.

The word androgynous is close to Saro. Whether it be his vocals which presents a unique mix of masculine and feminine sonorities or perhaps his genre which wasn’t even decided on until the music industry began to label it- Saro is an artist that revels in the between. The result? A tantalizing new approach to popular music today, with keen attention to introspective lyricism, musical ingenuity, and artistic integrity.

Saro will tell you he fell into the music industry on accident. Born and raised in Los Angeles, his mother who was also a vocalist saw that her son possessed musical gifts at a very young age, but as a child he was more interested in Warcraft than music lessons. Regardless, his mother was relentless in her support, hiding tape recorders around their family household, in hopes of capturing her son’s casual musings and consistently encouraging him to grow into the artist he would one day become. That day didn’t occur immediately post childhood. After high school he left LA for a stint, studying Business Economics at the University of Southern California, Santa Barbara. Following his return home post graduation, he fell into a day job position with a music manager/movie producer.

A self-proclaimed “shower singer,” Saro is naturally shy, usually preferring to steer clear of too much direct spotlight. Years of unassuming pondering, plus a few chance encounters with and some wise words from Lionel Richie, mark the beginning of Saro’s acceptance of his voice. An impromptu jam session gone well at a party with his close friend Simone was the final straw, Saro was ready to undergo his metamorphosis, one that would grant him the freedom to be creative in ways he never dreamed possible.

It is this exact unapologetic willingness to express that sets Saro apart from other artists. A few minutes spent scrolling through his Instagram or Spotify, it’s apparent that the depths of Saro’s creativity are substantial. Known for his gripping and, at times jarring, visuals, Saro often uses his body as an extension of his message, fully immersing himself in his creative endeavors.

His first EP, In Loving Memory (2016) grapples with Saro’s encounters with depression, specifically grieving the loss of his close friend Simone (the same friend that spurred the casual performance which inspired him to pursue music). With keen attention spent on thought-provoking lyricism, intricate R&B leaning melodies, and electronic based production, Saro entered the artist landscape with a distinct edge.This edge was only sharpened as Saro released his stunning visual companions for his freshman EP. Collaborating with likeminded visual artists, together (and on a low budget) they create videos that are not only stunning but also emotionally provoking.

His second EP, Boy Afraid (2017) and most recent release Die Alone (2019), was entirely co-written and produced by his collaborator and friend David Burris, together the pair explore the properties of sound with curiosity and expertise. Similar to stories one hears of 60s & 70s classic rock legends spending hours in the studio, using avant-garde techniques to cook up the perfect concoction, Saro and David take a similar approach to making music. Utilizing plug-ins, found sounds, and complex manipulation of Saro’s vocal, the outcome of their labors is the luscious microcosm of sound we hear today.

Showing no signs of slowing down, since the release of Die Alone, Saro has been busy performing live and creating more thought-provoking visuals – most recently releasing an independent audiovisual “Floorboards” just yesterday (Nov. 4). Only two minutes and twelve seconds in length, the song is written in a stream of consciences style, musing heavy, poetic words over an ethereal, piano-laden accompaniment. The video, directed by Alex Cook takes place in the desert, likely symbolic of the forlorn feelings Saro felt when penning the words, the majority of the video features a physical altercation between Saro and another man. The struggle ends in an embrace, following Saro’s solo departure, representing a powerful statement of overcoming struggle and claiming ones’own. Check out the video below and we’ll see you at the Satellite on Nov. 21!

Jessica Thomas