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SOKO playlist, 2020

Soko’s summer playlist

As she releases her new album Feel Feelings, the French musician has put together a summer selection: ‘Pretend you’re on the beach, in your mind, with all your friends, and you’re hugging all sweaty and it feels so good’

TextSelim BulutIllustrationCallum Abbott

LA-based French singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and actor Soko’s new album, Feel Feelingsfeatures 12 songs about life, love, and self-acceptance.

Although the album was recorded in New York with a who’s who of the city’s talent (Chairlift’s Patrick Wimberly acted as producer, while supporting players include Sean Lennon, Beach Fossils’ Dustin Payseur, MGMT’s James Richardson, Diiv’s Colin Caulfield and Andrew Bailey, and Hand Habits’ Meg Duffy), Feel Feelings also draws on classic French pop, like Serge Gainsbourg’s Histoire de Melody Nelson and Air’s 10,000 Hz Legend. The sound is simple and sexy – which is ironic, as Soko actually underwent a deliberate period of celibacy for the album’s 18-month recording process. Opting to hold back until after the album was finished, Soko instead put that energy into her work, letting its lyrics be inspired by “all the sex I couldn’t have”, as she jokingly describes it.

To mark the release of Feel Feelings, Soko put together a new playlist for Dazed focused on the return of summer.

“Music is always what keeps me happy through the hardest times,” Soko says. “I love making playlists that match my mood. I made this one called ‘Put Sum Summer in My Heart’ because I think we all could use a bit of summer magic right about now!”

“So, there’s some groovy good mood songs by Roy Ayers, Lion, Beach Boys, Harumi... but also some chill songs for sweaty summer nights in the dark, like ‘Planet Caravan’ by Black Sabbath, which I find to be extremely sexy. I also put my favourite French song, of course – Gainsbourg’s ‘Ah Melody’. It has the best production; everything about the song is perfect.”

“So now, it’s time to make lemonade and pretend you’re on the beach, in your mind, with all your friends, and you’re hugging all sweaty and it feels so good. It smells like sunscreen, you’re eating chunks of watermelon and you have a cheap straw hat on. You feel me?”

Listen to the playlist below.