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Event DetailsWe all have a choice as to whether or not we'll be slaves to the barrage of information and noise that western modernisation subjects us to. Suzi Wu is opting out. Suzi Wu is not concerned with buzz sounds or fashion trends or being the voice of her generation. Born in Blackpool, she grew up in London and spent the summers back up north, learning as much in the big city as she did in the never-ending car journeys she'd take on the motorway. Driving back to extended family, Suzi (surname: McDermott) earned another extended family in the car where she enjoyed the company of her mother and her mother's extensive record collection: from Beastie Boys to Riot Grrl, Beck to Patti Smith. You can hear all and none of those influences in Error 404, her second EP; the sound of pop turned inside out.
Pop culture is deeply important to Suzi. She's more likely to cite a communist quote as influence than a specific Joy Division album. From the bands she'd listen to growing up, to the “collective” she considers herself part of in East London currently, she recognises the power of music in its subversion of societal norms and in its welcoming of outcasts; outcasts who are really smart. At mention of Charli XCX, Suzi confesses to admiration at the way XCX has managed to outsmart old industry tropes. With her second EP on the horizon – the follow-up to 2017's 'Teenage Witch' – she's following in similar self-possessed, fan-base building footsteps. Word of mouth and DIY tricks work for Suzi. Before she was signed she put out a DIY video, which got DefJam's attention. She's signed to the legendary label in the US now.
Error 404 is a far more electronic collection of songs and more unashamedly pop. Suzi, however, strives to buck trends. The EP is chopped and screwed with a hip-hop edge. Suzi's vocal delivery has been compared with M.I.A. and King Krule. Those comparisons both feel limiting and reductive. Particularly given Suzi is 20 years-old and living her own unique experience. The four songs are rooted in her plainspoken swagger, which she carries out in her lower register and doesn't pretty up to render it more feminine. “Hungry” is about her ambition for success. “I'm not hungry – I'm starving,” she says today. Her verses almost recall UK Grime acts such as So Solid Crew.