New Jersey pop singer, Sofia Khorosh (preferably Sof) has finally released her long-awaited EP after three (almost four) years in the making. Its release is a weight off her shoulders, and she can breathe easily. She’s seen a swell in her audience in a very short amount of time and walking into an H&M in Soho hearing your latest track, “Fruit Water SZN” is nothing to not scream excitedly about. But even small victories are not won overnight, and the journey from “Inertia,” to “Fruit Water SZN” and their final place on Sof’s EP, hasn’t been easy.
The process of her EP began back in 2018, just before Sof was due to graduate from college. She began writing with a friend, Mike Smith, before she considered creating a larger body of work. With no idea what her sound was, or even how to find it, Sof connected with a friend of Smith’s, Paul Ritchie. Ritchie helped Sof explore just what her sound might be, resulting in the creation of four demo tracks. But by the Fall of 2019, she began searching for fresh ears, taking what would be her first official single, “Inertia,” to producer Tyler Toomey.
Together, Toomey and Sof wrote “Movement,” and “Bloom,” with Toomey co-producing. In March of last year, Sof linked with Russell Hayden, who helped produce “Movement” and eventually co-wrote and produced much of her EP, “Dawn.” Sof is beaming. “It’s finally here,” she says, “I’m so excited for everyone to listen to it!”
In essence, “Dawn” is the musical equivalent of a novel, with each song in chronological order according to the past four years of Sof’s life. Because the song placement is so meticulous, it’s her hope that listeners adhere to the order of the tracklisting, even if they have heard the previous singles. With “Dawn,” Sof is anticipating that people will learn a lot about who she is and what she’s been through. With her ability to capture moments in time and the feelings associated with them, her EP is a powerful delivery of sentimentality that can resonate with everyone.
Her previous singles, “Inertia,” “Movement” and “Fruit Water SZN” are already strong on their own, with the ability to carry themselves and the stories they tell without the backup of an entire album. But putting them on “Dawn,” strung together like monumental testaments to Sof’s life, they are even stronger than before, telling a compelling tale of woe, reflection, and empowerment. “Dawn’ is kind of a peek into my brain,” says the singer, “Perhaps an intrusive one at times.”
“Dawn” highlights the extremes Sof has lived in and the struggles she’s overcome…and some she is still overcoming. “I know that’s not an individual experience for me,” Sof admits, “Duality and contradiction exist within all of us, and I think it’s fascinating to examine both sides of ourselves in as honest of a way we can.” [sic]
Appropriately the EP begins with her classic, “Inertia,” starting at a low point of depression, self-reflection, self-doubt, and total apathy. “Inertia” still holds a very powerful place in Sof’s career and her heart. While Sof cherishes all of her songs, “Inertia” sticks out in a way that the other tracks don’t.
“Inertia has a very specific hold on me because writing it was the first time I was able to look at myself from a detached third-person perspective,” Sof confesses. Through “Inertia,” she recognized all the grievances and shortcomings she faced were her own, and her responsibility to bear. “I felt like such a victim all my life,” she says, “When I sat down to write ‘Inertia,’ this huge realization came over me in a kind of eureka moment.”
Filled with motivation and drive, Sof dove further into music, determined to see it through. “Inertia’ was therapy for me, I’ll always be indebted to it. It [“Inertia”] feels like its own entity at this point.” [sic]
“Inertia” ends, having us leaping into “Movement,” a track about the uneasy balance of hustle culture and its impending lead to burn-out. It’s an anthem for the modern age where everything feels like a constant ad interrupting your headspace, urging you to buy something, join something, or ‘do’ something (usually promoted by an influencer you’ve never heard of). “Movement” properly leads us to collapse, straight into Sof’s previously never released “I Had a Dream,” which acts as an intro to its sister song, “Awake.”
“I Had a Dream” is a very haunting and hypnotic song. Introducing us to a manic, laugh-cry-scream that is nightmarish and gorgeously eerie. It begins on a harrowing note but by the end, you feel as if the control has been reestablished like one would in a lucid dream. On the surface, “Awake” sounds like a love song, but in reality, it is about self-reflection. It’s essentially “Inertia Part II,” without the harsh inner critic.
“It’s [Awake”] about following a lifelong dream that hasn’t panned out the way you anticipated,” Sof says, “and whether or not you should continue. Even if it means self-doubt, deep sadness, and constant rejection.” Sof has lived her life chasing her dream, and at this point, she’s come too far to give up now. She admits that it’s extremely difficult, “I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t.” (#Ifeltthat).
“Dawn” ends on a positive note, transitioning to “Bloom” and wrapping up with the upbeat track “Fruit Water SZN,” which was released last year in the sweltering heat of summer. Concluding this cathartic EP on “Fruit Water SZN,” with its message of self-love and care is pitch-perfect. Simultaneously, the final track mirrors the ending/beginning message of the EP’s title, “Dawn.” Sof remains reticent about this, likely expressing a secret smile.
“I can’t say much now,” she teases, “I’ve probably said too much already!” What can be said is that Sof has a lot in store for this year. And she has no plans on holding back, and why should she? For now, though, the focus is on “Dawn,” and it is everything you can expect from this burgeoning pop star.
“I’m thrilled to have this body of work [“Dawn”] out in the world,” she concludes, “It’s a piece of my soul, and I hope that everyone who listens can find a piece of themselves in it too.”
*Listen to “Dawn” now available on all streaming platforms! Keep up with Sof on Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, Twitter, and her website, Sofmusic.com
** All photos courtesy of Sof, taken by Skylar Watkins
About the Author/s
Amaris Pollinger is the Music + Entertainment Editor at the New Jersey Digest. She lives on the fringes of a ghostly battlefield with her husband and their pets.
Addicted to coffee, a lover of wine, music, and history, she just wants to hang out on a cozy porch somewhere.