Sofia Bolt – Waves

“The world is so fucking small, I’m sure I”ll run into you. Holding hands, walking down the avenue with the new you. Maybe that’s what I need, to stop dreaming about you.” This cascading vision of conflict, self-coercion, and resolution populates the track ‘Get out of my Head’ from Sofia Bolt’s album Waves. It’s not just on this track that songwriter Amelie Rousseaux spoons on the self-deprecation, irony, and insight of an artist exploring the fullness of her creative appetites. This is an album brimming with entendre, double-meaning, wordplay and psychological double-meanings. The peaks and troughs of life’s waves.

Rousseaux, originally from Paris, enjoys sardonic confidence that comes with being better-read than her opposite number. ‘Get out of my Head’ is one such place where her love of irony does nothing to conceal itself. Living in Los Angeles now she celebrates ‘yet another beautiful fucking day’. Seriously, what can be wrong when the sun is high?

For the most part Waves is an album composed in the first person, and the persona of Sofia Bolt affords Rosseaux license to speak directly into the “…sarcastic eyes…” of her subject, or the mirror. The mysterious ways of life, and love are enjoyed and hearts are referenced many times on this nine-track album. Often they are felt as things beyond control, or overwhelming, or somewhere over there.

The timbre of this sequence is deep and ingrained. There’s a maturity to production that shows a respect for the old-fashioned regard for rock ‘n’ roll. Guitars, which do most of the driving, are given space to scale the walls. Drums add earthy tones, and vocals sit high in the mix. Rousseaux is an excellent painter of images. Lyrically, she occupies the voice with a kind of quasi-confessional – avoiding cliche but hitting endless truisms. These elements all taken back to their sparest, richest version.

Geographic locations, London, Ojai, Paris, are amongst the places name-checked as Sofia Bolt explores a landscape that is also altered by time, and the development of self and imagination. This is a well-travelled sequence, and the sense we get is that the romantic sheen of the distant is not perceived as either exotic or exciting. Rousseaux sings of being sea-sick in paradise. Idealism is rarely entertained. Personalities are skewered through behaviors, not projected belief-systems. The result is a deeply compassionate, non-romantic version of affection.

Emotive, often raw, and perfectly realized – there is a something in Sofia Bolt’s Waves that brings in the attention. This is an album that is of it’s time, and also timeless. A rare sequence that will endure and provide point of reference.


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