Wednesday, June 2, 2010
She could be 20 or 200. A real girl or hazy ghost. Bra-burning feminist or romantic Victorian. Mooning over Edward Cullen or Mr. Darcy. Betwixt between, one thing or another - Laura Marling's latest release I Speak Because I Can is both old soul and present-day pixie.
The singer/songwriter has been a frequent in the UK indie-folk scene since her days of backup vocals for Noah & the Whale. Marling's first release at 17 was already way beyond her years - lost loves, failed poets and tear-stained blouses. At that age I was journaling about the thrills of going to a field party or hanging out in someone's garage until it was past curfew. So much for my self-believed romanticsim.
Speak tells tales of responsibility, particularly belonging to women, that bolster her seemingly fragile facade. Backed by beloved Mumford & Sons, it's like having the vastly talented rugby team putting their best girl up on their shoulders. The largely acoustic instrumentation and alto supporting vocals are as lush and rich as the peat moss on the heath (on which she likely stands, singing into the wind, right hand on her guitar strings, left hand resting on a unicorn and scoring an A+ in calculus. whatta betch)
Laura Marling // Alpha Shallows