“In Loving Memory,” the debut EP from Los Angeles synth-noir artist Saro, arrives on Friday. It’s a stunning, cinematic dive into the netherworld of Evan Windom, who graduated from his previous incarnation as Evan Mellows to embark on his journey as Saro, working on the EP with producer Robin Hannibal (Rhye, Jessie Ware, etc.) and writer-producer David Burris.
His inspirations range from shoegazing greats to modern pop experimentalists to the Smiths — “my all-time favorite band,” he says. Which makes “Day Old Bread” — the artist playlist he has curated for Buzz Bands LA — even more of a revelation.
First, check out the video for the single “Test,” which he co-directed by Stormi Bree. Then sample the melancholy second single “Looking” before enjoying “Day Old Bread” and his comments on each song.
||| Watch: The video for “Test”
||| Stream: “Looking”
||| Stream: “Day Old Bread”
Iamamiwhoami, “Play” — Iamamiwhoami is one of my biggest inspirations visually. Sonically I haven’t found a song of theirs I don’t like.
Portishead, “The Rip” — So beautifully dark that it has made me cry before.
My Bloody Valentine, “Sometimes” — The menacing guitar throughout coupled with the low-fi vocal is devastating. I love how sad but hopeful the entire “Loveless” album makes me feel.
Jon Hopkins, “Open Eye Signal” — This song directly influenced the production for my song “TEST.” Jon Hopkins is a genius.
Cocteau Twins, “Fotzepolitic” — I want Liz Fraser to adopt me. Cocteau Twins songs have some of the most beautiful melodies and vocal performances.
Deep Forest, “Bohemian Ballet” — Someone I was dating recently played the “Boheme” album for me and I’ve been obsessed ever since.
Q Lazzarus, “Goodbye Horses” — I am thankful for “The Silence of the Lambs” (1991) for introducing me to this song when I was 7. I think I might cover it in my live show.
The Smiths, “Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want” — My all-time favorite band. I live with the discography on repeat.
Darondo, “Didn’t I” — So much pain and longing in his falsetto. I can’t decide whether to dance or cry.
TR/ST, “Bulbform” — Robert Alfons has the most hauntingly beautiful voice. The production makes me feel like I’m on a drug that doesn’t exist yet.