Who would have thought that the scorching heat of a summer in New York could unleash creativity? Sophia Amato, based in London, finds inspiration even in the most commonplace. The artist who had already gifted us Glorious Mess in 2021 comes back strong with a second EP, NY/LON, featuring six tracks detailing personal experiences during her stay in New York. Like a love letter, this alternative R&B project once again demonstrates the artist’s creative strength.
A journey that extended to six weeks has given birth to an entire EP. A journey that was not only physical but also emotional, as this project is also an internal exploration. Thus, we could consider it the result of a fusion between personal introspection and the capture of a city that is like a concrete jungle. But not only is NYC the source of inspiration; she confesses that Federico García Lorca’s work Bodas de Sangre also has a significant presence in the EP. Lorca’s homage to free-spirited characters, those anti-protagonists guided by codes of existence and love, is the essence of the theme of NY/LON. But we can’t forget the ‘LON’ in the title because she adds: “That summer I kept extending my flight. Not quite ready to return to London. Sitting by the air in apartment L63, lethargic and beautifully strung out from city nights, I felt most alive and curious. Unsure where to call home, I wrote NY/LON as my metaphysical utopia, suspended somewhere between the two cities.”
The journey begins with Icons, the first single she released and currently the most listened to on her Spotify. Trumpets adorn the melody that works perfectly with Amato’s powerful voice. A hit with character based on the towering buildings of New York. It is followed by Sunburn, a song that reminds us of church choirs, as the choirs and the sound of the organ create an almost religious aura. But nothing to do with the lyrics, as it expresses a longing for love and acceptance from the city, while reflecting on a past love. We reach the halfway point with NY/LON, a musical utopia loaded with experimental sonic elements, based on the singer’s experiences during flights between New York and London, capturing the essence of these cities that never sleep.
Run on Water is the most special track, as there are no instruments, only vocals. In a capella, the artist manages to convey from the depths of her being, with themes such as resistance and the ability to overcome oneself. We are almost at the end of the EP with Casino, which brings us back to the instrumental, this time with a more positive anthem, focusing on the excitement of having someone in your life who brings you luck. It ends with Isaiah of which an incredible music video was released less than a week ago. Amato dressed in white in an empty space while plants grow around her is the clear definition that sometimes simplicity is what conveys the most. The song reflects on the experiences and lessons learned from accepting goodbyes. And now it’s up to us to accept that the EP is over, but we will be eagerly awaiting her future projects.