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Hear Laura Marling slow burn on new single “Wild Fire,” see her at the TLA in May

Laura Marling | courtesy of the artist
Laura Marling | courtesy of the artist

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 →

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New Music Show Preview w/ Laura Marling, CRX and more!

Laura Marling_076 Final Retouch 2MB

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.

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A duet of brilliance, Laura Marling and Johnny Flynn enchanted at Union Transfer

Laura Marling / Photos by Elizabeth Mazenko
Laura Marling | Photo by Elizabeth Mazenko

“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 →

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Tonight’s Concert Picks: Laura Marling at Union Transfer, Grimace Federation at Kung Fu Necktie, Joni Mitchell Tribute at First Baptist Church and more

Laura Marling | Photo via Facebook https://www.facebook.com/lauramarling
Laura Marling | Photo via Facebook https://www.facebook.com/lauramarling

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 →

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Listen to Laura Marling’s new album Short Movie, see her at Union Transfer August 1st

Photo via Laura Marling Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/lauramarling)
Laura Marling | photo via facebook.com/lauramarling

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 →

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With Laura Marling, a sold-out theater still feels intimate (photos, review, setlist)

Laura Marling | Photo by John Vettese
Laura Marling | Photo by John Vettese

“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.”

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Recap: Laura Marling warms up for the show tonight at Free At Noon

Photo by Elizabeth Mazenko
Photo by Elizabeth Mazenko

British singer/songwriter Laura Marling played a humble acoustic set on the Free At Noon stage today. Warming up for tonight’s highly anticipated, sold out show at Prince Music Theater, Marling played favorites, like “Master Hunter,” off of her new critically-acclaimed album,Once I Was An Eagle. Check out the photo gallery above, the set list below and listen to the entire performance
here (via the WXPN media player).

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Just Announced: Laura Marling headlining the Prince Theater on 8/30 (tickets on sale Friday)

Laura-Marling-5British singer-songwriter Laura Marling just announced a short run of U.S. dates that brings her to the Prince Music Theater in Philadelphia on Friday, August 30. Tickets to the show go on sale this Friday, July 12th, at 10 a.m. Marling’s fourth album, Once I Was an Eagle, was released on Virgin Records back in May. Below, watch a short film inspired and soundtracked by the first four songs on the album.

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Recap: Laura Marling’s Free At Noon performance at World Cafe Live

With a Brit and two Mercury Prize nominations under her belt, 21-year-old folk musician Laura Marling very well stands a chance at being the next Joni Mitchell or Tracy Chapman. Her music strikes a minimalistic balance of deep vocals and hand-picked acoustic guitar; her lyrics, meanwhile, are loaded with profound observations about love, anger, and the human experience. As an artist who calls upon the goddess of wisdom, Sophia, as her muse, it’d be easy to believe that Marling is not singing about her own life, but is instead channeling the sentiments of a greater sentient being.

Even in speaking, Marling doesn’t hint at the power of her vocals or the depth of her thoughts. Her eight-song-set was finished in 30 minutes—due, in part, to her lack of conversation while she was on stage. As she tuned her guitar between songs, she laughed at herself, saying, “This is where I wish I had loads of hilarious banter… but I don’t.” She thanked the crowd three or four times and didn’t say much else.

Instead, she poured her voice into lines wrought with sad beauty, such as “My children will live just to grow old,” from “Rambling Man,” and “Dear lover forgiven, my love is driven by rage,” from “Night After Night.” The latter is an obvious stand-out on her latest album, Creature I Don’t Know. The track has a Leonard Cohen feel to it, with dark guitar, deeply human lyrics (about passion, religion, and decay) and thoughtfully plucked lighter notes with bits of melody. As she wrapped up the song, singing “I stand on the mountains and call people to hear,” beneath the lights of the World Cafe Live stage, Marling glowed. Yet, her show was clearly not meant for a large venue. Marling is an artist who should play coffee houses (as she is tonight during two sets at Grindcore House) or, perhaps, the apartment parties of her closest friends. The applause seemed almost boisterous and crass after her quiet, intimate melodies. —Naomi Shavin

Set List
1. Sophia
2. Don’t Ask Me Why
3. The Muse
4. I Was Just A Card
5. Alpha Shallows
6. Night After Night
7. Rambling Man
8. I Speak