If I had one tiny bit of an even an ounce of her vocal talent, I’d be one happy soul. Or her songwriting skills, I’d take that too. Or her complete coolness would be nice also. Basically, what I’m saying is that I think I want to be Laura Marling.
Sadly, that cannot happen. But, seeing her perform live is a close second. After a hearty introduction from Bob Boilen, Marling and crew swan-dived right into debut single, “Soothing,” off of her latest album, Semper Femina. Continue reading →
Next Friday, English singer/songwriter Laura Marling will drop her sixth studio album Semper Femina following 2015’s Short Movie. In anticipation, she sat down with World Cafe’s Talia Schlanger to discuss the record and perform stunning renditions of some of its tracks. Stream the whole thing below via NPR. Continue reading →
Laura Marling has shared a new video for “Next Time,” the latest track we’re hearing from her forthcoming Semper Femina LP. It follows earlier songs “Wild Fire” and “Soothing” with a hushed guitar and gently-swelling orchestral arrangement surrounding the UK singer/songwriter’s intimate vocals, which are reminscent of Karen Carpenter at times. NPR Music has the premiere of the video in their First Watch series here.
Last November, UK singer/songwriter Laura Marling shared “Soothing”, the sensual lead single from her upcoming sixth album, Semper Femina. She continues that trend with “Wild Fire”, which sees Marling sounding more confident in voice and arrangement than ever before. Stream the track below.
Where “Soothing” hinges on its prominent bassline and spacious, clacking percussion, “Wild Fire” sees the acoustic guitar return to center stage. The track has an undeniable warmth to it that brings to mind songwriters of the 70s, especially during its hooks, where she soulfully stretches out the “me’s” and “free’s” at the ends of phrases. Similar to “Soothing”, gender and sexuality are prime topics of discussion, but “Wild Fire” doesn’t feel like a cut-and-dry protest song. Rather, it explores these themes more subtly through specific, personal experience, opting for an open dialogue with the listener over a definitive proclamation. Choosing not to engage in that dialogue would be their loss, but even still, they would be treated to one hell of a slow jam. Continue reading →
Monday nights mean new music discovery on XPN! After a long weekend we have some more things to be thankful for and they come in the form of new music. One of our favorite singer-songwriters preps a new album and we’ll have first listen. Also on the player tonight, from the vaults, we’ll play a previously unreleased song from Prince and dig into the side-project from one of the members of The Strokes.
“I’ve known Johnny since I was 16,” Laura Marling laughed as her tourmate Johnny Flynn picked up the violin to join her onstage. “And we both look exactly the same.”
Saturday night, Union Transfer was host for a delightful evening with these two icons of modern British folk. Joined by emerging UK singer songwriter Marika Hackman, the night was filled with an enchanting performance of raw images and old memories. Continue reading →
UK singer-songwriter Laura Marling released her fifth album, Short Movie, back in March and her tour in support of it brings her to Union Transfer tonight. Johnny Flynn and Marika Hackman open the all ages show; more information can be found at the XPN Concert Calendar. Below, download “Howl” from Marling’s appearance on World Cafe. Continue reading →
25-year-old English singer/songwriter Laura Marling just released her fifth full-length album, Short Movie. The self-produced 13-track LP explores an electric side of Marling’s music after she took a self-proclaimed gap year to travel and discover where she stood in terms of her music career. You can stream Short Movie in it’s entirety here and check out her live performance of the album’s third track, “I Feel Your Love”, below. Laura Marling will be coming to Philadelphia to play at Union Transfer on August 1st. Find tickets and more information by heading over to the XPN Concert Calendar. Continue reading →
“That was a really long opening song,” Laura Marling told the sold-out crowd at the newly-renovated Prince Music Theater. It was actually more like four songs – a medley of the opening suite of her new album, Once I was an Eagle, which stretches to about fifteen minutes even with Marling performing solo, minus the percussive and instrumental flourishes on the record. She laughed and thanked the audience for being so attentive – as if they were going to talk over top of her. Marling had the crowd at her August 30th performance pretty much enraptured during her hour-and-fifteen minute set last night, and the English singer-songwriter has an uncanny way of making a packed theater feel as intimate as a living room show.
Though Marling is an intense performer in many ways – gritting her teeth, looking out at the crowd with an intense stare, singing expressively about lust and betrayal and self-reliance – when she is not singing, she is warm and funny, joking about her guitars acting up on her and self-effacingly cracking on the tedium of acting as both performer and technician.
“This is the point the set where I normally switch guitars,” she said. “But this guitar is behaving very well. And I feel comfortable tuning it in front of you.”
Though the set was largely focused on Eagle, Marling visited her 2010 outing I Speak Because I Can for a three-song stretch mid-way through (“Alpha Shallows” was great), performed “Sophia” from 2011’s A Creature I Don’t Know, test drove two new ones (“Bleed Me Dry” has been performed on radio sessions, another listed only as “Rambo” seems very brand new) and played her take on The Allman Brothers Band’s “Whipping Post.” The husky blues of the original was remade Marling’s minimal acoustic style, but she didn’t seem pleased with the results. “I think I’m too English to pull that one off,” she said. Not true; it sounded great.
Philly folk-inspired trio The Gallerist opened the night with a well-recieved half-hour set drawing from their 2011 EP A Falling Waltz as well as material from the record they told the crowd they’ll be recording this fall. Catch them playing two shows on October 5th at One Shot Cafe (with The Sun Flights) and The Fire (with The Levee Drivers). Below, see a gallery of photos from the concert, and after the jump, check out Marling’s setlist and a video of “I Speak Because I Can.”