Artist: Sophie Zeyl

Sophie Zeyl already built up quite a reputation as a singer/ songwriter in the Netherlands when she signs to I-Rain Records in 2006. In 2003 she comes first in the singer/songwriter finals at Paradiso, winning best vocalist prize. She extensively tours the Dutch clubcircuit, as well as performing live on radio and television shows, receiving a lot of national attention and credit.

Expectations are high strung on her debut album. And with this album she hopes she can show she has a lot more going for her then just that ‘girl with guitar’ image. As Sophie states herself: ‘Playing solo acoustically for an audience has taught me a lot. There is nothing to fall back on. Your vocals, guitar and songs have do carry it all. This can leave you feeling vulnerable yet at the same time it provided an honest and solid feedback on my music. However, I never viewed playing acoustically as a musical form to perfect but more so as a starting-point for my songs. Besides creating a good song, I want to create a interesting sound as well. This was my intention when I started recording “Two Ways of Running”.’

In 2004 she hooks up with multi-instrumentalist/producer Anka Wolbert to start the first recordings. Anka started her musical path in the Eighties as co-songwriter of electronic new wave band Xymox, signed to famous indie label 4AD (London), to get later signed to Polygram and E.M.I., New York. Despite their different backgrounds in music they discover similarities in their approach to music. Sharing the view to keep the music as pure as possible with a clear emphasis on the songs but to simulteneously be interesting and challenging sound-wise, Pieter Nooten is invited to the project as well. Pieter Nooten proved an unique artist in the past with his album “Sleeps With The Fishes” (4AD), producing a serene ambient sound in collaboration with Michael Brook (Brian Eno, U2) which gained him worldwide credentials.

This interesting combination of musicians/producers results in a captivating debut album, released in May 2006. The intimate acoustic and vocal sound of Sophie Zeyl is accompanied by subtle beats and varied guitar sounds, layered atmospheres and surprising arrangements. Find whisperlike songs as “You Could Have Run Away” and “Under Water” alternated with a more solid sound as in “The Love Gone” and the catchy, almost screaming “I Am Not Like That”. Sophie Zeyl produced a record to discover and each time you listen to it, it will yield up some of its secrets. Music to dive into and explore.