Whereas a lot of modern pop music feels like drinking a two-litre bottle of Coke in about five minutes, a hyper-charged product pumped with sensory overload to disguise its lack of craft, Norwegian artist SOFIA isn’t afraid to take a different path. The latest is a slow spread of singles, Where To Go is a song that has a natural sense of air and space.

In its world, things just seem relaxed and easy. Producer Coucheron conjures up a breezy smooth-pop background, and SOFIA‘s voice is front and centre, standing in the middle of a decision but unhurried and unstressed. There’s a bunch of nice little touches here, like the shiver of strings before the drop into the last chorus, and it all makes for a gently-pretty pop song, ostensibly about being lost, but still sounding at peace with itself. Check it, and a Q’n’A with SOFIA, out below.

So to start, tell us how you wrote Where To Go. How does your collaboration with Coucheron usually work?

Where To Go started with an idea I came up with two years ago. I was stuck with some chords and a melody for the chorus and I couldn’t get on. Then I picked the idea up this spring, and things went so much easier! It´s fun when you pick up old things and they suddenly work so smoothly the second time. I guess you sometimes just have to let things be for a while. In June I shared the song with Coucheron, and we started working on it straight away. I am really content with the product! I love working with Coucheron, and personally I like it best when I can come with a demo that is almost complete and we can start producing straight away.

The strings on this track really add a nice bit of detailing, where did that idea come from?

I think both me and Coucheron felt like we needed some strings in this song, but I don’t remember the idea coming from a particular place. I like strings! And it´s a natural part of both I Don’t Want To Lose A Friend and Fake It.

A song centred on uncertainty certainly seems at home in this era of corona-flux, did that play into your thinking when you wrote it?

No, the lyrics doesn’t really have anything to do with corona, but I wrote it in a period where I felt a lot of confusion. I am a thinker, so it´s not unusual for me to ask a lot of questions, but sometimes they feel a bit overwhelming. The lyrics pretty much say it as it is: I wonder what to do, I wonder what to say, how to spend my time, how to prioritize my relationships, how to do life basically. Big questions for sure! I think it´s important for us all to stop up once in a while and reconsider where we’re going. At the same time I need to tell myself that there isn’t one correct answer to these questions. The only answer that I personally have found to be firm, is Jesus.

You’re a couple of singles into your career now, do you feel you’re getting a better idea of the artist you want to be?

For sure! With Where To Go and I Don’t Want To Lose A Friend, my two recent singles, I feel like I’ve found the kind sound I want to have. I love the combination of the down-to-earth atmosphere, personal lyrics, creative harmonies and exciting production. I´ll probably continue to develop and change directions, but now I feel like I’m getting a better idea of the artist I want to be!

Every Monday we’re updating the 50-track-strong Listen AHEAD Playlist on Spotify, adding ten strong songs by sill relatively unknown artists at the beginning. This week’s new picks also include fresh songs from Liam Thomas, We Will Kaleid, The Holy, Pixey and others. Follow the playlist right here on Spotify and give these new talents a chance.