Paseando al perro – SOCCER MOMMY: Clean (Fat Possum, 2018)


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Últimamente estamos a vueltas con el Pop femenino de raíz Neo-folkie. Un género que está mostrando caras visibles como las de Courtney Barnett, Anna Burch (de la que hablamos el otro día) o Sophie Allison (aka. SOCCER MOMMY). Hubo un mini álbum a final del año pasado, pero éste es, oficialmente, su disco de debut. Y lo cierto es que Sophie ha levantado un poco el tono de la distorsión y elevado el de la producción y la limpieza sonora. Nos sigue atrayendo su sonido, pero ¡ay!, aquel arrebato inicial nos molaba tanto que realmente lo echamos de menos. Last girl, por ejemplo, es uno de los cortes regrabados que apareció en su primer sencillo casero. No obstante Clean (hasta su título lo dice), tiene varias canciones que pasan holgadamente el corte, y se pueden encontrar entre las mejores de los aficionados al género: Cool, Your dog, Last girl, Skin… En el resto, Sophie parece relajarse e irse a pasear al perro tranquilamente. ¡Benditos veinte años!

“In 2017, Soccer Mommy signed with Fat Possum Records and released Collection, which re-recorded selections from two years’ worth of uploaded songs. Less than a year later, Clean marks the official debut of the project by introspective singer/songwriter/guitarist Sophie Allison. On paper, the album represents a significant move from a homemade enterprise to a proper studio recording with a full band and an esteemed producer in Gabe Wax (Beirut, Palehound). Technically, Allison was already recording songs with other musicians and a dedicated engineer, but Clean takes it further, adding depth and precision to a still identifiable sound. Namely, the intimacy, subtle textures, and distinctly sinuous quality of her songwriting remain. From time to time, the production and mix add conspicuous touches that are far removed from her earliest tape recordings. “Still Clean,” for example, drops out of the stereo mix on the final chorus, rebuilding with additional vocal tracks and shimmering electronics before it closes on an exposed guitar line. Perhaps at least as significant as the production, it’s also her first group of songs to be conceived as an album. A 20-year-old at the time of its release, growth itself is a theme of Clean. “Your Dog,” for instance, isn’t about a cuddly pet at all, but rather her own inequitable relationship, one she’s ready to leave. The bass-heavy track chugs along, incorporating leaping guitar arpeggiation and layers of humming distortion as it unfolds. Dissatisfied and disarmingly candid throughout, songs like “Your Dog” and the dreamier “Blossom (Wasting All My Time)” decide to move on from relationships because our protagonist wants better (“I can’t see you blossom in the future that I’m dreaming”), while the incongruously power poppy “Last Girl” has the singer giving ground as she compares herself unfavorably to her beau’s last girlfriend. Similarly, alongside a catchy melody and layers of harmonic guitar, “Cool” covets the status of another. That song ends in collapse, slowing and distorting pitches as it fades out. Throughout the album, Allison‘s vulnerable delivery and quietly tormented lyrics stick as much as hooks, artfully gradated guitar tones, and haunting echo that’s mostly reserved for accompaniment, but they all work together in unsettled harmony” (All Music)

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