I love it when an album comes your way that surprises you, makes you love the ‘art’ of the album. I bought one last week that I can’t stop listening to …
Her name is Laura Marling. She’s only 23, hails from England and her new album “Once I Was An Eagle’ rocks. It’s an acoustic guitar-based folk record with stripped down drums, bass and cello. But it’s her voice that gets to me – it’s so compelling that I get lost in her lyrics and melodies. Her sound reminds me of a cross between Joni Mitchell and Beth Orton with a touch of Bob Dylan, Mumford & Sons and PJ Harvey.
The record is also a real album – with a beginning, a middle and an end. It’s a 45-minute snapshot of one idea where songs and ideas blend into each other to form one piece of ‘art’ – a rarity these days. It’s a throwback to the 70’s, when bands and artists defined the word album. It’s nice to hear.
There have been a few albums and artists I’ve really latched on to the past few years – The Vijay Iyer Trio, Michael Kiwaunka, Atoms for Peace, Frank Ocean, Arcade Fire – but this album stands out for me as one of those records you stumble upon that stays with you.
One other artist I’ve been digging lately is Ron Sexsmith, the Canadian songcrafter who is still a-top of his game. I saw him live recently and love his honest, simple approach to writing songs. He has such a way with words, such a beautiful range of melody in his songs and such a unique voice to tell his stories. He is still one of my favourites and hasn’t lost his touch.
Thanks for reading, see you next time.