SOFY is rising as one of the most essential voices in the realm of alt-pop, and is continuing to captivate audiences with her ever-evolving creativity. Her most recent creation titled "Chaos & Commotion," is a 9-track mixtape that serves as a testament to the journey she's traversed over the past year and a half. Within this body of work, SOFY skillfully guides listeners through a compelling exploration of the dizzying heights of love, the depths of despair, peaks of self-assuredness, and valleys of introspection. This emotional rollercoaster is vividly depicted in the tracks leading up to the mixtape's release, including "socks," and the subsequent singles "supermarket" and "WET PAINT," all of which have collectively garnered thousands of streams. In an interview with INTERSECT, SOFY explains how she expertly combines her music with her identity. SOFY is preparing to host an intimate three-night residency at The Grace, giving Londoners a unique and unforgettable taste of what's in store for her sound.
Your mixtape "Chaos & Commotion" is a time capsule of your emotional journey. Can you share specific instances of how individual tracks on the mixtape represent different moments or emotions in your life during this period?
It's still a mixed bag. There's been much chaos; my life tends to be chaotic. I'm always moving at a hundred miles an hour. A lot of the tracks encapsulate either specific moments or feelings. So, for example, in "socks," I wrote that when I just met someone who I liked, that was about falling in love and how, like falling in love when you have that feeling, it sort of overtakes your whole world and makes you see things differently. So that one was definitely about that "Ashley Cole Type Beat." That one's tongue-in-cheek, a crazy tune about feeling untouchable. But in some of those songs, like "Ashley Cole Type Beat," I like to write a persona because I want all the lyrics and "Ashley Cole Type Beats." That's not how I ever really feel about myself or anything like that. Sometimes, I like to put myself into the lens of something that is an extended part of me and then riff off that, which is quite fun.
"Yoyo" is highlighted as a track that marks an evolution in your sound. What are the musical elements and themes set this track apart from your previous work?
I've enjoyed pulling from a few more alternative and more guitar music-based influences for this record because I mainly like playing live. Knowing which songs I want to play live best, it's more like the upbeat ones that people could move to. I've transitioned more towards writing more guitar-based stuff than more songs I play live. "Yoyo" is a bit thrashier, a bit heavier. Not an avenue that I'd explored before. Some music that I liked listening to, like guitar music. Previous SOFY songs have been quite laid back, and "Yoyo" is not. That was something that I was pretty happy that we could expand the project into, but it still feels like me.
Ensuring that no two songs are alike, as exemplified by Chaos and Commotion, or do you anticipate a shift towards creating more thematically similar tracks?
I think this project, "Chaos and Commotion," will probably be the last thing I do that is not written intentionally. If I do an album or when I do an album, I've always wanted my first album project to be a concept album. So yes, that will be my next challenge. With my previous EPs and Chaos and Commotion, I was finding my feet as an artist and figuring out who I am as an artist, figuring out what I want to say. And I've loved exploring all these different themes and topics that I explored over Chaos and Commotion. And even though it's a mix tape, it does feel like a proper body of work. When I do an album, I want to pick a theme or story and stick to it. My favorite albums are ones where you can listen from start to finish, and they tell you a story, and you feel like you've been on a journey with the artists. When I feature projects, you can expect them to be slightly more intentional. I'm excited about that.
What are your long-term aspirations and goals for your musical journey?
I want to make songs and enjoy myself making songs. The most important thing for me is that I can make songs. And I don't care what form that takes. As long as I can continue making songs and people want to listen to them, I'll be making songs. But obviously, that's the main goal for me. That's the reason why I do this. I love writing songs and playing them, and I can't imagine myself doing anything else. But obviously, it'll be nice to win a Brit or something. I'm a perfectionist, so I always want more. I always like to have these general big ambitions that I think I'll only be satisfied once I reach them. But yeah, I guess just like at the crux of it is I want to make songs.
As a perfectionist, when it comes to your sound, how do you manage the equilibrium between various facets of shaping your artistic identity, such as storytelling and musical experimentation?
Because I was an independent artist for so long, just like doing the project with my manager, I now like to have a lot of control. I'm a massive control freak. It's is my baby. I'm very particular about the creative vision, as everything has to look how I want it to look. Visuals are so important. That says a lot about who you are as an artist. And you're lazy with that, it can show. And it's just fun like I love it. I'm a proper stickler for fonts as well. If anyone sends me something in a font I don't like it. I'm like, "That's not going out. We're going to have to change the font on that." So It's very important to me, and it takes a lot of time to ensure it is perfect.
How did your performances at Glastonbury and other renowned European festivals influence your artistic development and enhance your live shows?
The more gigs you play, the more you see what songs connect with people and the more songs you see that don't necessarily correlate with people. So it's a great litmus test for how good a song is, is how well it gets received when you play it live. That's impacted my writing loads. I'm like what I was saying earlier about how I'm like, like, I don't know, drifting more towards writing faster songs that are more like geared up towards life, that's just from playing stuff and seeing what people like and seeing what people don't like, well, not don't like, but what people seem to enjoy less. I like trial and error, and spending time with the band is always good.
What can fans expect at your live shows, and are there any surprise collaborations planned?
If they're going to come to my show, learn all the words because there'll be a test at the end. No, I'm joking. If you're going to come to the show, yeah, enjoy yourself, have a good time, and be nice to everyone else who's there. Well, one of my favorite things about doing this artist project is seeing people who didn't know each other before making friends through coming to shows and stuff. The more shows I play, the more I see a bunch of people who have made friends through coming to the gigs, and now they come together, which is sweet. So talk to people when you're there because everyone who goes to our shows is relatively like-minded, and they're all good vibes and fun.