credit: Roland Owsnitzki

Sophia Kennedy

Sophia Kennedy’s music sometimes sounds like a soundtrack to a world disintegrating, hanging on by a thread of memories, it combines the glamour and the morbid charm of tin pan alley show tunes from the 1960s or 70s and yet it fully embraces the deconstructed modernism of club music. Her latest album “Monsters” (City Slang 2021), is full of plot twists, moments of prettiness dashed with paranoia. The title itself, is a self-ironic, comic-like commentary of being an artist trying to tame own creations like “monsters” gone wild but also a nod to a generally threatening tension in the world. “Monsters” is pop music teetering on the verge of ruin.

Kennedy’s creative approach has always been unusual. Growing up in Germany after her family emigrated from Baltimore, she developed an ear for off-centred songcraft picking through her mum’s record collection: Whitney Houston and Simon & Garfunkel at first, Karen Dalton and the Velvet Underground later. Immersed in Hamburg’s dance music scene she met Mense Reents (Egoexpress, Die Vögel). The pair formed a writing and production partnership, and would make Sophia’s debut record together in 2017 which was released through DJ Koze’s label Pampa

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