Feature | Sunni Colón – “Summer Blu”

Sunni Colón Artist Image
It’s the start of our winter season here in Cape Town and it’s already looking unforgiving; if we walk outside, the wind is playing ‘umbrella snatcher’ and like a weigh-in, the rain relentlessly pounds our roof as if it’s actually trying to find a ‘way in’. Despite what’s happening outside, what I’m seeing in my head is literally a world apart. “Summer Blu,” the latest track from Los Angeles native Sunni Colón, oozes summer nostalgia as one is easily led to think about the tropics, water that sparkles like diamonds or even your own personal summer memory. One could assume it’s the track’s artwork that encourages us to run away with our imaginations like this, yet we say it is the beauty in the story he is painting that gives rise to these all these precious memories.

I’ve always known Sunni Colón as “that random guy who’s featured on Fall4You by Ta-Ku,” or maybe “that guy who’s featured on Stwo tracks.” But after going through his catalogue of music, it’s clear that he doesn’t just turn electronic instrumentals into soulful works of art, we also discover that he incorporates a multitude of different genres into his own projects – much like Frank Ocean, who seems to come up frequently when the name Sunni Colón is mentioned. The fact that Mr. Colón has his hands on film directing enables him to easily curate a sense of vision and imagination through his music. As I mentioned earlier, his music does not just TELL a story … No, no, no my friend. “Summer Blu” is a prime example of what it means to paint a picture through a sonic allure by virtue of its uplifting progression and the use of the instruments that mingle so well together within the stereo field.

In fact, deep in valleys of the stereo ‘field’ is a crouching bass line that lies mildly unnoticed just waiting to reveal its cordial groove to the listener. At the beginning of “Summer Blu” we’re greeted with a partially noticeable bassline that makes its full entrance during the climax of the song. It need not escape mention since it sets a positive tone right off the bat along with the glittery Rhodes placed at center stage. This bass and keys rendezvous is interrupted abruptly by a wispy guitar which sits just beneath his vocals. This is also when confusion settles in as one may begin to question the direction of the song. Strangely enough it works well and gives him a lot of space in the track to exhibit his vocal abilities, but this is just the teaser. The harmonies and layering of his voice during the climax creates this atmospheric environment which complements the strings that make you feel like you’re levitating. “Gone with the wind, trying to get back at you”… Repetitions of those words emphasize the loss of the deadbeat summer, thus arousing a bouquet of memories from the sunny season. You’re tossed into this dream-like state during the climax as there are a variety of airy sounds like bells and reverberated keys that assemble beautifully to orchestrate R&B and classical music elements all in one melting pot.

If you’re also making the mistake of thinking Mr. Colón is just a great feature artist, then his catalogue certainly proves otherwise. We can expect a deeply personal second album from Sunni set to release sometime in June following his Thierry Disko which was released 2016. If you’re into your R&B with some atmospheric textures, I’m talking about the likes of Kali Uchis, Frank Ocean, or even Jordan Rakei, this is definitely for you.

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