Release Date 12/15/2017
Los Angeles native Saro’s masterful pop-noir takes you on a genre-bending journey that cuts deep to the heart but is simultaneously elegant and alluring. His signature, soaring falsetto, rides atop brooding synths and unique instrumentation that goes from downtempo alt/R&B to electronic, orchestral works that strike a gracefully, cinematic tone.
Saro’s forthcoming new EP titled Boy Afraid delves into themes of personal introspection, love (and the lack thereof), as well as the deep disillusionment ailing society today. His sophomore body of work, the Boy Afraid EP mirrors Saro’s development as a matured songwriter and musician, focusing heightened attention on self-realization and the rejection of life’s cruelties. Set for release December 15 via Saro’s own label Mateo Sound, Boy Afraid was written in constant flux. Saro describes, “I was a bit of a vagabond while recording this EP...I stayed with friends all over the city and sometimes even slept at the studio.” The resulting string of tracks are the counterbalance of this state of inconsistency, which Saro notes, “could be the reason most of the songs on Boy Afraid adhere to a traditional song structure.”
1st EP single “Sky Doesn’t Blue” sets Saro’s impassioned vocals to a down-tempo, trance-inducing beat, which Pigeons and Planes called “simultaneously sad and beautiful.” Of the track, Saro notes, “as time passes, naiveté fades, and colors begin to dull. There's no love like the first love, and the sky will never be as blue as it once was.” 2nd single “Eyelids” focuses Saro’s signature dark pop through a lens of noir disco grandeur, which NYLON found “electrifying,” and Saro describes as “tracing the patterns to self-diagnose my detachedness brought on by rejections over the years. Scarred into a state of apathy.”
Follow-up “Vapor” further pulls Saro’s sonic dexterity into the spotlight straddling a line of neo-R&B and intricate electronics. The track explores a relationship’s fallout and ultimately becoming “intangible to someone...you have changed state. And through their grasp slips the fog of you, leaving only traces of your memory.” EP title track “Boy Afraid,” a brooding mid-tempo ballad putting Saro’s lush tenor on full display, takes a figurative dig at societal constructs and media-driven expectations, creating a platform for Saro to “shed these force-fed inadequacies, the fear and self-doubt...eventually.” Rounding out Boy Afraid is the elegantly minimalistic “Sardonic.” Lined with sweeping synths and poignant lyricism, Saro notes this is “the only song that I started on the piano by my lonesome.”
Released late 2016, debut EP In Loving Memory set the stage for Saro’s rise as a top new artist to watch. Songs like “Test” reached into themes of emotional convolution and resilience amidst painstaking grief. Others standouts such as “Looking” and “Two Suns” showcase Saro’s distinct mastery in exploring the depths of human conscious via lyrically-charged works of forward-thinking songwriting. Stereogum aptly coins it “deceptively penetrating pop craft.”
Saro’s live show is a powerful experience where he channels his deeply affecting electronic pop in a convergence with unique movement and physicality that touches on performance art. His visuals, which he co-directs, paint a beautiful yet dark picture that is an ethereal, strong, quiet presence on the brink of chaos. Saro first debuted his live show early 2017 and has since played several West Coast dates, SXSW, and Brooklyn’s Northside Festival (supporting Miguel). Fall 2017 will see Saro continue to play club dates and festivals, which will fall alongside the rollout of his new EP.