Compared to his recent musical epics, “Sugar” is short, if not exactly sweet. The song begins with a slow electro-orchestral swell, and the kind of drums that would fit in at a religious ritual or horndog club. Stevens’ repeated pleas — especially “Don’t make me wait!” and “Come on baby, gimme some sugar,” — read less as foreplay and more as an overwhelming need. The arc of the track is anxious, even disqueting. “Sugar” ends with a towering musical wave that seems to obliterate all reason.
It comes with a music video directed by Ezra Hurwitz and starring Samantha Figgans, Raymond Pinto, Walter Russell III, and Celeste Mason. A family bonds over sugary meals, but spends the rest of their time alone in anguished isolation. As the music builds, the house begins to fall apart, and the family escapes to the outdoors. It ends with the four of them without shelter, unencumbered, and together. Check out “Sugar” below.
The Ascension arrives Friday, September 25th through Asthmatic Kitty Records. Previously, Stevens shared the singles, “America”, the non-album B-side“My Rajneesh”, and “Video Game”. He recently linked up with Mina Tindle for the new song “Give a Little Love”. Stevens and his stepfather Lowell Brams put out the collaborative project Aporia in March.