When you type ‘Sofa King’ into your search engine of choice, up comes a plethora of questionable showrooms selling you the next best pleather three-seater. We’re not here for that though, rather we’re looking for the lesser known, albeit much more original, ‘pop obsessed transgender individual’ under the same name. Our Sofa King is fun, honest and wholly delightful.
Otherwise known as Dianne, Sofa King is originally from Birmingham but has found a very welcoming home here in Leeds. Their music spreads over several soundscapes, capturing the avant-garde qualities of the likes of Gary Numan, or Mercury Rev but still retaining a modernity in the likes of Men I Trust or, local legends, Van Houten.
We’ve been blasting their latest project Noted White Woman since it’s release in late July, even choosing the track ‘Edie’ as one of our songs of summer ’21. Speaking of the album, Dianne said via IG: “while this album is in no way art about transness (in fact every single song is about nothing real), it is intimately tied into a Real that i had to create in order to find a way to eventually exist honestly.” A swirly twirly revisiting of ‘Ketamine Queen’ from an EP with the same name, ‘Edie’ is an introduction to a party girl. Just listening to this one track, we already stumble across some of the reasons why we love Sofa King and their music. It doesn’t take itself too seriously; there’s humour, self-depreciation, a groove to move your body to and, perhaps above all, a wee bit of absurdity.
If you want another reason why we’re such a fan, check out this homage to Kate Bush they did for Supersonic Festival in celebration of International Women’s Day 2021. Dianne’s reimagining of ‘Mother Stands For Comfort’ (an under-appreciated anthem) and ‘Cloudbusting’ (stone cold classic) were quintessentially Kate Bush – creative, at times eccentric, but always true to the self.
She’s not afraid to shy away from a challenge, in fact their past two projects have been created under strict creative restrictions. Noted White Woman was recorded entirely on a Korg D3200 (good lord) and Don’t Let The Capitalists Win was tracked straight to a cassette tape on their beat down Panasonic boombox. They say diamonds are made under pressure, and indeed both of these project’s flourish within their limitations.
We’re so pleased Dianne is a part of this project and we can’t wait to see what Sofa King brings to the audience at Wharf on the 25th of August! Word on the grape vine is that we could be visiting synth-city…
Take a listen for yourself: