There’s no real, deep meaning to who we are – Cruel Santino on the alté community

The alté community have grown to be notable for their genre-bending style, 80’s and 90’s fashion dressing with inspirations got from early Nollywood movies and their music not fitting a particular genre but filled with experimental soundscapes, not basically following the “Afrobeat to the world” mantra. The younger generation, commonly classed as Gen Z are the larger population of the alté community, predominantly based in Lagos, Nigeria. Cruel Santino, one of the alté flag-bearers, an artist by profession, chats with Billboard on his latest album—Subaru Boys: FINAL HEAVEN—the meaning behind it and what he hopes to achieve with the experimental soundscapes of the album.

“FINAL HEAVEN can be described as a genre-bending album. Do you find it limiting to classify your music as alté alone?” asked Billboard regarding Cruel Santino’s latest album and the generalisation of the alté community. Santino’s answers: “Definitely” in respect to how the generalisation of the alté community doesn’t fully represent what they embody, continuing, “Part of why I made this work [Subaru Boys: FINAL HEAVEN is] that sometimes I wasn’t happy with how I was being portrayed.“. Adding to it, “. . . there’s no real, deep meaning to who we are” Cruel Santino furthers, saying with time, he hopes the narrative changes and a proper definition is put on the alté community instead of the misconstrued generalisation.


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