Sophia (British band)

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Years active1995–present
Associated acts

Sophia is a British indie rock band consisting of Robin Proper-Sheppard—former member of The God Machine—and the Sophia collective, a group of musicians who collaborate with Sophia. "Oh My Love" from the album People are like Seasons became an indie hit in several countries.


After the release of the final The God Machine album in 1995, Proper-Sheppard set up the Flower Shop label, putting out records from the likes of Elevate, Ligament, and Swervedriver. He also began recording a year later as Sophia. Sophia sounded nothing like The God Machine. Instead of ear-busting and grating, they were low-key and introspective. With the help from other Flower Shop artists—Graham Miles (Elevate), Dan Mulligan (Oil Seed Rape) and James Elkington (Elevate)—he recorded 1996's Fixed Water featuring the single "Are You Happy Now".

Two years later, The Infinite Circle followed. In 2005, this album was performed live in its entirety as part of the All Tomorrow's Parties-curated Don't Look Back series.

In 2001, Sophia released a live album De Nachten. The album was recorded during two festival appearances in Belgium and the Netherlands and features four new songs and a cover of the John Lennon song "Jealous Guy".

In January 2004, Sophia released their third studio album People Are Like Seasons. The album was released by City Slang/EMI and marks the first Sophia release for a major label. Thanks to the massive airplay for its first single "Oh My Love", the band reached a whole new audience. This resulted in chart success for the album in several European countries (highest entry was number 8 in Belgium). The band—of which the main members are now Robin Proper-Sheppard (vocals, guitar), Jeff Townsin (drums), Will Foster (keyboards) and ex-Swervedriver mainman Adam Franklin (guitar)—did a very successful tour of Europe in the first half of 2004.

In late 2004, a rarities CD was released called Collections:One.

Most of 2005 and 2006 were spent writing and recording new songs for the fourth studio album Technology Won't Save Us, which was released in October 2006.

In early 2009, the album There Are No Goodbyes was released. The limited edition version featured a bonus disc of an acoustic gig (Robin solo with a string quartet), recorded at Valentine's Day 2009 in Vienna.

During 2010, Proper-Sheppard did an extensive solo acoustic tour called 'At Home with Sophia...'. The idea was to create an atmosphere that was as intimate as a living room, for people to come and hear the songs of Sophia much as they were originally written. All shows were recorded and a number of them are available for free download on the Sophia Bandcamp page.

In early 2016, the album As We Make Our Way (Unknown Harbours) was released.

In late 2017, the album As We Make Our Way – The Live Recordings was released. It was recorded during the tour that supported the As We Make Our Way (Unknown Harbours) album. That album was played non-stop from start to finish and then a vast selection of classics by (what many call) Sophia v2.0. Some of these songs have changed rather dramatically from the studio versions.

In September 2020, Sophia released the album Holding On / Letting Go, following the release of three singles from the album earlier in the year.


  • Fixed Water (1996, The Flower Shop Recordings)
  • The Infinite Circle (1998, The Flower Shop Recordings)
  • De Nachten (2001, Flower Shop Recordings)
  • People are like Seasons (2004, The Flower Shop Recordings/City Slang/Bang!)
  • Collections:One (2004, Flower Shop Recordings)
  • Technology Won't Save Us (2006, The Flower Shop Recordings/City Slang/Bang!)
  • There Are No Goodbyes (2009, The Flower Shop Recordings/City Slang/Bang!)
  • As We Make Our Way (Unknown Harbours) (2016, The Flower Shop Recordings/[PIAS]/Motor Music)
  • As We Make Our Way – The Live Recordings (2017, The Flower Shop Recordings/[PIAS]/Motor Music)
  • Holding On / Letting Go (2020, The Flower Shop Recordings)
  • "So Slow" (4 track version) (Split 7" single with Swervedriver) (1996, Echostatic/Space Baby)
  • "Are You Happy Now" (1997, The Flower Shop Recordings)
  • "Desert Song No. 2" (Free 10" tour single) (2003, The Flower Shop Recordings)
  • "Oh My Love" (2004, City Slang/Labels/Virgin/The Flower Shop Recordings)
  • "Holidays Are Nice" (new version, promo only) (2004, City Slang/Labels/Virgin/The Flower Shop Recordings)
  • "Pace" (promo only) (2006, City Slang/The Flower Shop Recordings)
  • "Where Are You now" (promo only) (2007, City Slang/The Flower Shop Recordings)
  • "There Are No Goodbyes" (2009, City Slang/The Flower Shop Recordings/Bang!)
  • "Alive" (2020, The Flower Shop Recordings)
  • "We See You (Taking Aim)" (2020, The Flower Shop Recordings)
  • "Undone. Again." (2020, The Flower Shop Recordings)

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