Myf Warhurst shines a spotlight on women who should be peppering your playlist. This week it’s the annoyingly talented Laura Marling.
Laura Marling is too young to have made as much good music as she has. At just 25, she’s about to release her fifth album since she hit the circuit seven years ago, was nominated for Mercury Music prize for her first album (just after her 18th birthday), won a Brit award for best female artist after her second album, and has garnered further Mercury noms with subsequent LPs. Marling has been so productive, functional and creative in such a short space of time that you would be forgiven for thinking this prolific young artist could only be an annoying upstart. That couldn’t be further from the truth.
Photograph by Deirdre O’Callaghan
The new album Short Movie emerged out of a creative time where Marling threw everything she knew up in the air. Taking herself away from the UK and her guaranteed adoring audience, she moved to Los Angeles, and travelled around the country playing to rooms full of folk who knew nothing of her background and cared even less. She admits this period of exploration was confronting, but it put her back on the edge that she so desperately wanted to traverse in order to find inspiration again.
And it shows. From what we’ve heard so far from this forthcoming album, Marling’s still got her folk roots, but there’s a shift towards some dirtier rock sounds, with electric guitar being thrown into the mix and much more full voice on some tracks. It’s free and loose.
Clearly, the change of environment has done Marling wonders. Darn her and her young and extremely talented ways.
Laura Marling tours the UK in April/May
Her fifth album, Short Movie, is out on March 23
Single – Short Movie
Myfanwy Warhurst is a broadcaster at Double J radio (ABC Australia), TV presenter, Guardian columnist, music nut and general layabout.