Image Credit: Ussi’n Yala
On “A Tenuous Tale of Her”, Poté (aka Sylvern Mathurin) marks the debut album release for Bonobo’s OUTLIER imprint. He shares emotive single from the album titled ‘Stare’, in which we see the Paris based artist reflect on his own experiences with mental health. “It’s a song about being in a vicious cycle with anxiety and paranoia” he explains, “where we feel there’s no escape, no space to breath”.
‘Stare’ arrives shortly after the announcement of “A Tenuous Tale of Her” and lead single ‘Young Lies’ ft. Damon Albarn, which received widespread support from the likes of Pitchfork, NME, Line of Best Fit, Consequence of Sound, Stereogum, XLR8R and Mixmag who described the single as “an energetic cut that pulsates with vibrancy and life”. Poté has also received praise across a wide spectrum of supporters in the past, including Annie Mac, MistaJam, Phil Taggart, Nina Las Vegas, TEED, Pierre Kwenders, Jamz Supernova, Laurent Garnier, and Toddla T. He’s been featured in Bonobo’s 2019 ‘fabric presents’ mix, featured on 2019 Africa Express album “EGOLI”, produced remixes for Little Dragon and Gorillaz, and recently performed on Colors Berlin.
Channelled through an imagined theatrical performance with a pre-apocalyptic setting, “A Tenuous Tale of Her” provides a record that’s tough, tender and grand all at once. The connections Poté has built along the way speaks to the variety of his influences: with connections from Lisbon’s kuduro-fused Enchufada label, to Benji B and Damon Albarn, he’s built a sound that’s packed with ideas and musical touchstones alike.
Poté’s music has always balanced contrasting impulses. On the one hand, there’s the rhythmic, celebratory music of his Caribbean upbringing, and on the other, there’s his interest in exploratory, emotive songwriting. On this record, he takes that approach in a bolder direction: immersive and atmospheric, it’s a platform for those two sides of his music to strike a fresh dialogue. It’s the latest chapter in his journey to find newer and bolder ways to express himself. On this record, more than any project he’s released so far, Poté undoubtedly opens up – both in his sound, and in the parts of himself that he reveals.