Soccer Mommy, aka 22-year-old Sophie Allison from Nashville Tenn., never ceases to amaze with her sonic and emotional range. Her latest album, 'color theory' feels like a natural progression from 2018's instant-classic 'Clean', stepping up her production while staying true to her lo-fi bedroom roots.
The songs are longer, with some having over five-minute run times, and more narrative in structure. Where 'Clean' was told in short vignettes, 'color theory’ is a full novel of emotional insights. Soccer Mommy stays introspective, shifting her focus from her relationship with others to her relationship with herself. She confronts self-loathing in the face with observational wit, describing herself on track three's 'royal screw up' as "fake it til you make it in a can," with a small orchestra of string instruments closing out the song in a grandiose style fit for a queen.
The album strives to understand how to not only live, but live with yourself, especially the parts you're not particularly fond of. The album's lead single 'lucy' directly confronts coming to terms with your own worst self, with Sophie flirting with her own personal devil wearing leather pants and flashing her shiny eyes.
The album's emotional climax is the ethereal and beautifully haunting 'yellow is the color of her eyes'. Cinematic is the one word to describe this seven-minute slow-burn of a song. Soccer Mommy spins an intimate, detailed tale of love and grief, inspired by her mother suffering from illness. It is a touching story of how familial bonds are able to cross oceans and illness in memories.
Soccer Mommy has grown tremendously as an artist in the two years since her last album, and it's obvious that she hasn't even yet reached the pinnacle of her musical prowess. 'color theory' is sonically and thematically dynamic, comforting as well as heartbreaking, and true to Sophie's brand just another screwed-up Gemini making music in her bedroom, longing for understanding and connection.