Thursday, November 22, 2007

2008 - You are old when...

...policemen look young; at least that was the traditional answer!

I'm now thinking that music has the 'thin blue line' on the defensive. There have, for certain, been many very young recording artists for decades but now we have those that both write and record (and sometimes produce as well)! That would not mean much if they were not making waves.
Now they are, therefore it matters a great deal, and they may possibly have a surprising influence in 2008. Here are two that I suspect we will soon hear much more of:

I've been on about Laura Marling for months and with, I believe, good reason. God knows; modern English folk needs and richly deserves the likes of her!

Now (17th November) even NME has seen fit to decide that she might be the one to re-energise UK folk for the next generation and that is something that is long overdue. My advice is to buy the EP My Manic and I on 7" while you still can do so affordably! There are no covers of trad. folk and no quasi-traditional folk either, just four new tracks. They are, in fact, all rather remarkable and that would still be true even if they were not all written and performed by a seventeen-year-old!
Two of them were recorded live and she already has a quite awesome reputation for live performance.
Her, as yet untitled, début album is due to be released by EMI on February 4, 2008 (subject, of course, to industry machinations).

On the subject of mini albums (and this one is a six-track 33 rpm 12”, but also available on CD) I’m finding it difficult to find one I like any better than Follow Me Down, the début release by Poppy & The Jezebels, which I only mentioned fairly recently although it was originally released about six months ago. It is, to say the very least, surprising…
... and they also write their own songs but their sound is more pop-rock grounded, is influenced the rather old (The Velvet Underground), combined with the fairly new (Cat Power) and both nefariously filtered through The Pixies, their more electro-peers but then with their own new twists on rock, electro and acoustic stuff on top of that!

You know it makes no sense whatsoever, on the face of it is therefore an utter mystery, but that actually
isn't quite true ...

Follow Me Down (2007) sounds entirely logical.

In fact it is an incredibly accomplished début (and it is even available on 12" vinyl) regardless of the fact that the average age of the band members is still just about sixteen. It does make perfect sense too - they simply decided not to attempt to be be the next girl-pop band and who could blame them? They could however still be a surprise in 2008 and already have a reputation for conjuring live tricks that go beyond the ordinary. The album is released on Reveal Records.

Would I like to see these artists live in 2008? Yes. Both please! (and also plenty more that I could add...)

Note added 27th November:
I've added a new, more relevant, image that is of the vinyl version and also wish to add some facts that I overlooked. The vinyl release is limited (but still available affordably) to the extent that all copies are numbered by hand there is a poster included that is individually signed by all four members of the band. I thought it might be quite good but, having listened to it loads of times now, I was wrong again and it is actually so much better than that.

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