I Thought I Was An Alien

BEC 5161135 BEC 5161135

This is the debut album from French singer-songwriter Soko. Intimate, lo-fi, crazy, sexy, funny, tear-stained, heartbreaking, often all at once, Soko's songs have already touched people around the world, earning her a massive global following. At one mega-gig in Australia, she had 15,000 people singing along with her. Since her teens, Soko has been on a rollercoaster journey. From a stockpile of over 100 songs, she has now finally whittled them down to a selection of 14. Aptly-entitled I Thought I Was An Alien, it's full of love and loss and worry -- the kind of fundamental, life-dictating human feelings, which are so far beyond rational explanation, they really ought to be kept under lock and key. Like one of her absolute heroes, Daniel Johnston, however, Soko has the rare ability to sing openly about those feelings, in a way which is utterly compelling, sometimes devastating, but also, completely uplifting. Like innumerable bedsit troubadours of her generation, Soko started out with just her voice, her acoustic guitar, and GarageBand. After moving to Paris, her early demos were picked up by radio stations in Denmark, Belgium and Australia, making her too much of a new pop thing, without her own consent. In 2007, her music was used in a Stella McCartney show in Paris. Soko played gigs with Daniel Johnston, MIA, Babyshambles, Adam Green, Jeffrey Lewis, Seasick Steve and many others. Feeling under pressure, perhaps, she went from home studio recording to trying to record her songs in a proper studio, working with producers who would hire session musicians to play the other instruments. Soko's acoustic playing, too, has grown up from the punky thrumming of before, often arriving at the complex, fluid picking of the "old '60s folk dudes" she's been listening to, such as Roy Harper, Michael Hurley, Davey Graham, Karen Dalton and Jackson C. Frank. In 2008, Soko moved to Los Angeles. Amassing more recorded versions out there, she soon realized she needed someone to help her sift through it all, and make sense of everything she'd created. In late 2010 she was eventually introduced to Fritz Michaud, who had her instant admiration, having worked on the late Elliott Smith's final album, From A Basement On The Hill, which is one of her favorite albums. Having asserted her control over her music, Soko realized that rules are made to be broken, and allowed others -- close friends, this time -- to add their expertise. When she sings of a rootless existence, always sadly moving on with her suitcase and her guitar, you know that this is her existence -- and it really is. I Thought I Was An Alien finally introduces a truly singular talent, at her point of fruition. Includes a bonus CD version of the album.