Not your typical show. If you aren’t familiar with Soko then I would recommend heading back out to the internets finding her first EP “Not SoKute” (It will take some digging) and dancing around your house to it… Done? Ok now, head back out to the internets find the Soulwax documentary “Part of the Weekend Never Dies”, (this can most likely be found on amazon, and probably parts of it on Youtube) watch the introduction, with a beautiful animation narrated by Soko and smile the whole way through it… Done? Ok, so by now you probably know that Soko is super cool, very fun, and seems quite personable. This is how you would and could expect her live shows to be, really upbeat, full of jokes, intimate, and an all around good time. Now, head back out to the internets (last time I promise) and download her debut album “I Thought I Was an Alien” (Easily found on iTunes) listen to the tragic-sad-slow-but-somehow-still-fun songs and wonder what happened. Well Soko is not afraid to tell you, as she mentioned several times throughout the show, she is newly single, after being engaged, and not at all happy about it.
Sadly for her, but great for us, the show was grossly undersold, and we were treated with a very personal performance. Her opening act, brother Max Sokolinski, was also one of Soko’s only two backing musicians. The three performers all switched between various instruments with Soko often playing more then one in a song (in part due to the recent drop out of her drummer). The audience was very well engaged, and encouraged to participate by “dancing like an alien”, help keep time by clapping, and even sing/hum backup vocals.
When I heard Soko had released her first full-length album I was very excited, finally after several years the wait was over. I imagined that this was going to be pretty special since it was so long in the making, and that soon enough radio stations around the world would be pumping out Soko singles, probably every second track topping the charts. I braced for a Soko music revolution, soon enough you would hear young girls imitating her heavy french accent, dressing in french bohemian cloths and buying pinups of her rebel brother Max for their bedroom. Alas, I must admit to my great disappointment in her new album, taking solace in the fact that she did save face by putting on a great show. Perhaps, the Soko fans of the world can unite, selling out her shows all over the country, turning her depression into inspiration and moving her to create new upbeat material, finally initiating the long over due Soko revolution. We shall see. Do your part by heading out to a Soko show near you, tour dates and locations can be found on her website at www.s-o-k-o.com.
Tags: Chris Bretecher, Doug Fir Lounge, Soko, Soko Concert, Soko Portland, Soko Show