’s performance at the newly opened Oxford Art Factory
would have to be one of my favourite gigs to top off 2008. It felt like this small French girl (real name Stephanie Sokolinski ) wasn’t that angry at all, but rather had invited us all back to her place for some songs she wrote and a few laughs. As she traded instruments with her backing band, searched her moleskine for song lyrics and bopped around like she was too young to even be admitted into the venue, a loving atmosphere flowed off stage. Lacking a set-list, she simply played requests from the crowd. She slipped in favourites, sing-alongs and other little surprises, creating a set that rivalled some big-name acts in length.
was primarily spontaneous and fun, she also knew how to exercise subtlety to perfection. She was left alone onstage and within seconds of uttering, “So, of course, you were supposed to call me tonight
,” the crowd was silent for her solitary hit, I’ll Kill Her. Audience joining in only during the chorus, it was a moment unlike any other: the crowd weren’t singing along with her music, they were singing along with her, like the friend who never forgets the guitar to gatherings.
With midnight in sight, she left with I’ll Never Love You More, a song full of the pop culture references that make our eternally nostalgic society. She may well be a fad, her songs soon left only to be the indie kid’s number one choice at karaoke bars. But Soko’s appears oblivious to all that, happy enough just laughing and singing in the meantime. And it wouldn’t be better any other way. Thanks for ending the year with an almost perfect gig.