A startling, superbly fully realised album...

PC Music acolyte SOPHIE has always been more concerned with texture and consumerism than melody and emotion, so it’s startling that ‘It’s Okay To Cry’, the opening track from her debut album, features naked candidness. Instead of abrasive crunching, we get a moving tale of self- acceptance and pride set over fluttering synths.

It seems that SOPHIE has taken on her most challenging project yet: her true self. And this theme permeates ‘OIL OF EVERY PEARL’s UN-INSIDES’, even if, musically, the rest of the album returns to the kind of tracks you’d expect if you’ve followed SOPHIE’s career up to this point.

‘Faceshopping’ features beats and bangs fed through a variety of effects to create something that sounds like a fight in a radiator factory, yet also includes SOPHIE’s ruminations on pop star branding.

Towards the end of the record, ‘Immaterial Girl’ is the kind of hyperactive twisted pop that’s more akin to SOPHIE’s production work for Charli XCX. For someone whose whole MO focuses entirely on the synthetic, revealing the human element behind the music could have been disastrous.

However, SOPHIE manages to incorporate the personal without detracting from what set her apart in the first place, and it makes for a record that’s as affecting as it is thrilling.


Words: Joe Rivers

Dig it? Dig deeper: Autechre, Cashmere Cat, GFOTY

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