Anna Sofia Cannot Be Contained in 'LET ME OUT I'M FREE!'
Photo: Steph Verschuren
Energy, the anxious frenetic kind that collapses around someone like an orb, radiates off Anna Sofia in all she does. One of those rare children who grew up endlessly performing for the family, singing amongst patrons in their Greek, Toronto establishment, she never lost her passionate drive. Any distance from the act of creation became uncomfortable for her.
Since her debut output two years ago, Sofia the artist has been bottled up by the pandemic, expanding her influences, honing her aesthetic, and growing in confidence. The all-caps yell that is LET ME OUT I'M FREE! is the release valve on that creative pressure cooker being unclasped. The substantive beauty of the project is equaled by a nearly 15-minute short film co-directed by Sofia that is set to release May 25.
For all of her multi-disciplinary talents, music is clearly a bulwark of her talent; it’s a place where the creative crystallizes into blissfully irreverent storytelling and melodic castigation. Sofia explains the causation of this attitude, "The EP tells a story about a point in my career where the voices of the industry took control over me. I was unable to share my true creative vision, my true taste in music, and overall my true art. I built this world in this facility as a metaphor to express the way I felt during that period of time. I felt trapped, controlled, manipulated, and this was exactly how I wanted to execute those feelings."
The lead track "Fuck Your Money" is a self-explanatory, vintage revelry about a creative refusing to be bought or commercialized, and with remarkable irony, it’s an absolute jam, worthy of label attention. "Caged Birds Don't Sing" is a wickedly tight, autotuned, Gospel-adjacent tune that mellows into R&B softness that makes you wanna cuddle the outro against your cheek.
"Cruel World" is a prior single that has a proper, rolling baseline and rock feel that begs to be played loud and live. It’s followed by another prior single, "Surround Me," that’s on the complete opposite end of the spectrum - a slow-burning balad, replete with strings and pianos worthy of any bejeweled diva's catalog. "No. 5" is a gem of a tune, and the one I'd insist anyone listen to in order to understand both the frantic energy and well-crafted song composition previously referenced. Ending on "Go" the EP once again demonstrates the elasticity of Sofia's sound and possibly best showcases her vocal range as well. Driven by snare paradiddle and staccato lyrics, it has a haunting, longing feeling that stays with you.
Truly, Sofia is irrepressibly talented, and LET ME OUT I'M FREE! is a culmination of her creative vision, a reason to not cage your birds, and take joy in watching them fly free.
Listen to LET ME OUT I'M FREE! below: