Thursday, March 22, 2012

Belgium Adores Laura Marling

22 years old, beautiful and love connections with some of the most eligible bachelors of the alternative music scene. Laura Marling has everything going for her. Some might forget how gifted the young singer/songwriter is. I can assure you, this Monday evening in Brussels, in the cosy setting of the Ancienne Belgique, nobody could even doubt Marling's astounding talent.

The British musician was born in Reading, England in 1990. At the age of 5 she began playing the guitar and at only sixteen she became a part of the London folk scene. With famous friends like Noah and the Whale and Mumford and Sons, who drew inspiration from American folk, she had the chance to learn from the best.
She started with Noah and the Whale as a vocalist, where she grew closer to singer Charlie Fink.
When you rely on the music Laura and Charlie produced during this period, their love affair was rocky. In 2008 Marling left Fink for Marcus Mumford. The stunningly beautiful Noah and the Whale album 'The First Days of Spring'(2009) can be read as a heartfelt lament on their break up.
The Black Cab session where they play music together is one of my favorite videos. I love Fink's voice, it's a shame that the last Noah and the Whale album is so uninspired.

Black Cab Sessions: Charlie Fink: Give a Little Love, Laura Marling: Alas I Can not Swim, 2007

In 2008, when Marling was only nineteen her first album 'Alas I can not swim' came out, followed by 'I speak because I can' in 2010. They were both nominated for the Mercury Music Prize.  2011 saw the birth of her third and latest album 'A creature I don't know'.
In the same year she received the Brit Award for British Female Solo Artist.

In Brussels Laura opened with 'Just a Card' and some tracks from this last album. The first magical moment was the superb version of 'Blackberry stone'. One of my personal favorites.

Laura Marling, Blackberry Stone, march 19th, Ancienne Belgique Brussels.  video: Uschi Cop

This execution was exemplary for all her earlier work that she played that evening. She managed to take these known songs to a whole other level. Although I had heard every song at least a hundred times, it felt like I heard them for the first time.
This was also the case with the closing song 'I Speak Because I can'.

Laura Marling, I Speak Because I can, march 19th, Ancienne Belgique Brussels. video: Uschi Cop

Marling brought with her a great band which included a cellist who really contributed to the dramatic power of the performance, for example in the new single 'Sophia'.

Laura Marling, Blackberry Stone, march 19th, Ancienne Belgique Brussels. video: Uschi Cop

Last but not least I bring you the first listen to a new song by Marling.

Laura Marling, New Song (Once is Enough), march 19th, Ancienne Belgique Brussels. video: Uschi Cop

I leave you with the set list and links to my spotify account for all Laura Marling songs and the album The First Days of Spring by Noah and the Whale.


The Mere Alchemist

Set list

Just a Card [A Creature I don't Know]
The Muse [A Creature I don't Know]
Salinas [A Creature I don't Know]
Don't Ask Me Why [A Creature I don't Know]
Blackberry Stone [I Speak Because I Can]
Alas I Can Not Swim [Alas I Can Not Swim]
Goodbye England (Covered In Snow) [I Speak Because I Can]
Dance Dance Dance (Cover Neil Young)
My Manic and I [Alas I Can Not Swim]
New Untitled Song (Once is Enough)
Alpha Shallows [I Speak Because I Can]
Ghosts [Alas I can not Swim]
My Friends [A Creature I don't Know]
Sophia [A Creature I don't Know]
Rambling Man [I Speak Because I Can]

I Speak Because I can [I Speak Because I Can]

Noah and the Whale - First days of spring
Laura Marling - All Albums

No comments:

Post a Comment