Sofia Verbilla wrote “Ghosts” as the first song populating Harmony Woods, a project named for a sleepy Delaware town but informed by crucial junctures in her nearby Philadelphia. Verbilla lets her narrative linger in the miles between suburbia and city life while self-awareness from being both venerable and vulnerable rides shotgun. It’s the oldest song being revamped for the band’s sophomore LP,Make Yourself at Home, and it floats over the threshold with more ringing clarity than the loose chords jangled out on the 2016 demo. It’s a meditation on worry, a feedback loop of driving anxiety. Over muted alt-rock chords, Verbilla’s voice is crystal and glass, while storm clouds circle overhead, teasing an uncertain doom.
Harmony Woods is no stranger to mastering melodrama, with their debut albumNothing Specialdabbling in cinematic setups and climatic explosions, echoing the firepower churning between late adolescence and all that complicates it.Make Yourself at Homereturns to Sofia’s scene shop with more nuance, setting up a story of a toxic relationship with its foundation and fallout captured in widescreen. Produced by the band and Chris Teti (TWIABP, Fiddlehead), Harmony Woods directs the wide-eyed romance of a first night spent together—a steady pop-rock backbone jolts “The City’s Our Song” upright with its hook—and the countless nights spent driving this pair apart. The fulcrum point between bliss and disaster pivots on “That’s Okay,” where empty reassurances turn to resignation as the arrangement splinters open. The album toes the line between confusion and catharsis by tackling both in measured doses, whether that means unpacking forward motion (“Keep Going”) or the rose-colored tickle of nostalgia (“Sagittarius”) in layered first-person bursts.
Make Yourself at Homeinvites listeners to unwind their own unhealthy behaviors while the characters within stumble through doing the same. It may be an early entry in one of indie-rock’s most promising songbooks, but it’s one that remains long after its final curtain call. - James Cassar
"The 20-year-old singer-songwriter’s clear vocals and candid lyrics feel at home in the Philadelphia DIY scene that raised her." - Pitchfork
"At just nineteen years old, Sofia Verbilla tackles some heady concepts on “Ghosts,” a testament to turning toward your demons instead of running from them, giving them the finger, and then telling them to f*ck off." - Uproxx
"Verbilla has a clear, captivating voice, and she’s an astute writer, given to memorable slogans that lock into place with strong pop-punk hooks. At its best, on the catchy “The City’s Our Song” or the propulsive “Ghosts,” Make Yourself At Home confirms that Verbilla is, indeed, something special." - Philadelphia Inquirer
"As a fixture of Philly’s booming music scene, Harmony Woods has proved with “Best Laid Plans” that she is ready to enter the indie rock limelight." - Atwood Magazine
"The opening seconds of Harmony Woods’ new album Make Yourself at Home sound like Phoebe Bridgers singing over dreamy s/t-era Bon Iver guitar, while the second track sees her pivot to the rogue, monotone bass lines and shimmering guitars of Midwest emo acts like The World Is a Beautiful Place." - FLOOD Magazine
"Make Yourself At Home solidifies Harmony Woods’ place as one of the most promising young voices in the canon of indie rock." - Uproxx
"Hopeful pop melodies weave through wistful indie rock hooks and seamlessly accompany Verbilla’s uniquely pensive yet tender lyrics." - Phluff
"(Ghosts) is exhilarating in its motion, delivering a sobering message in upbeat fashion." - The Grey Estates
"...the Philly rocker capably straddles the stark contrasts of both her self-effacing and introspective and hot-pink-haired ass-kicking-frontwoman personas, at once conflicting and complementary, while she negotiates an earned place for herself and the HamWoo crew to stand out among Philly’s basement DIY rock-and-rollers. " - WXPN