Sophie
Oil of Every Pearl's Un-Insides


4.0
excellent

Review

by Finn Baker USER (43 Reviews)
June 16th, 2018 | 303 replies


Release Date: 2018 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Critique on the dehumanization of society, vulgar sex acts, and spacey epics all contained within one album.

The title of OIL OF... is a sneaky homophone phrase, translating to 'I love every person's insides.' That sentence relates to Sophie's aesthetic as of late, presenting herself as an androgynous being that never refers to one specific person when inserting lyrics into her music. She lets an inhuman voice command the listener to bounce, shake, completely lose control of their body. This allows every listener, no matter who they are, to be affected to some degree by the booming instrumentals and cartoonish pitched-up vocals, both of which are still here. Occasionally they will be put on hold, though, to provide some astonishing vocal performances. Those performances make this album notable among all her previous work.

The entirety of It's Okay To Cry refuses to be labeled as gimmicky, and while it still contains Sophie's trademark spontaneous edits, the listener is not meant to nod their head to a sonorous rhythm. These lyrics are honest and emotionally moving, and the ultra-soothing synth accompaniment could be enough to move someone to tears if they let it. Sophie helps you through the crash after the high, taking the place of your close friend who would "know you best" and think "your inside is your best side." This was the first single for OIL OF... and is the first song in the tracklist, but it does not set the tone for most of the album. The following two tracks are the other two singles, Ponyboy and Faceshopping. Both songs jump right back to the ferocious dance music with which Sophie has established herself, but one of the voices present this time is vastly more barbaric than the artist has ever been before. It sounds gruesome, nearly terrifying, as it begs for abuse on one track and acts as the bassline on its successor.

The fact that Faceshopping's growling synth is actually speaking was mind-blowing on discovery, but what's even more shaking is what follows that up. Is It Cold In The Water? and Infatuation utilize a distinct female voice singing about falling, feeling hopelessly alone, or just craving information about someone. The former has no percussion at all, and the latter has subtle smatterings of it every once in a while. Again, we hear examples of Sophie orchestrating something truly beautiful. Still, neither of these songs are the peak of Sophie's tranquilizing quality on OIL OF.... That title goes to Pretending, a six-minute ambient piece lathered in immense reverb. No drums, no words. It is only layers and more layers of sound.

Every once in a while, Sophie tries to suppress the urge to drag out a song with lush pads and heartfelt lyrics. Immaterial and Whole New World (half of the nine-minute epic that closes off the album) make an effort to return to the bouncy and bubbly style that she crafted so well in previous years. Immaterial is especially good when compared to some other songs on this album. What it lacks in pop experimentation is rekindled through an extremely catchy rhythm and set of melodies. I wish this showed up more on OIL OF.... If anything held it back from being incredibly exceptional, it is because this concoction of a pop base and cuddly blankets of sweetness is not seen enough. Most of these songs are still phenomenal, but some are either too dark or far too shiny to give the entire project consistency.

It was an interesting choice to put the three pre-release songs at the very beginning of this album. All familiarity vanishes after that point, and Sophie will periodically struggle to maintain that surge of integrity. It slips when a song sees too much of the artist's experimental or noisy side, and falls when 15 minutes have passed with very few discernible beats. Almost every song, when digested by itself, is a spectacular showcase of Sophie's musical prowess. I will keep returning to OIL OF... to get a rush of excitement from songs like Faceshopping or Immaterial, but as a 40-minute album, this project can't help but falter in a few places.



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user ratings (529)
3.7
great
other reviews of this album
Kirk Bowman STAFF (4.5)
messy beauty...

Winesburgohio STAFF (2)
high concept low dividends all ambition no fun...

Drbebop (2)
Glitchy kitsch nothings...

Christopher Y. (4.5)
A whole new world to the pop music scene....



Comments:Add a Comment 
granitenotebook
Staff Reviewer
June 16th 2018


1134 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

love this review! always enjoy reading what you have to say, you have a unique perspective, often noticing details that others fail to.

SteakByrnes
June 16th 2018


27004 Comments


hi finn

Digging: Earthists. - Have A Good Cult

Lavair
June 16th 2018


949 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Haven't heard that name in years...

rabidfish
June 16th 2018


7611 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

the bangers are CRIMINAL

The other tracks bring out a more human side of Sophie... The plastic mask falling off to reveal a very earthly being in her insecurities, fears and longings.



But damn them bangers just BOP

Digging: Meshell Ndegeocello - Plantation Lullabies

Astral Abortis
June 16th 2018


6731 Comments


damn didn't expect to enjoy this as much as I am

Lavair
June 16th 2018


949 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Hey, my review got picked for the Best New Music thing! Thank you!

RadicalEd
June 16th 2018


9546 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

wow album made me feel incredibly old.

Astral Abortis
June 16th 2018


6731 Comments


it should.

Djang0
June 16th 2018


728 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This feels like it should be 20 minutes longer

Sinternet
June 16th 2018


25111 Comments


gotta spin this but love sophie am expecting a 5

treeqt.
June 16th 2018


16970 Comments


yikes

neekafat
Contributing Reviewer
June 16th 2018


23257 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Wtf is this and why does it have a 4.2, didn't know you could have those anymore

GhostB1rd
June 16th 2018


7939 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is kinda obnoxious.

Asdfp277
June 16th 2018


23788 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

too much hype, i gotta downrate this

treeqt.
June 16th 2018


16970 Comments


you know it

calmrose
June 16th 2018


5669 Comments


"why does it have a 4.2"

because it's an awesome album

AnimalsAsSummit
June 16th 2018


5986 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

very experimental, a bit too post modern for me to go any higher than 4, but its definitely sounding interesting af.... great production

Ryus
June 17th 2018


27927 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

heard the opener when it was released as a single and really didnt like it...maybe my opinion has changed though



gotta hear

Digging: Lil B - Evil Red Flame

hal1ax
June 17th 2018


15726 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

yea i need a few more listens to fully process this. sort of still unsure whether i like it or not. def has a few standout tracks tho

Jasdevi087
June 17th 2018


7039 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

yeah i'm a bit unsteady on this so far tbh



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