I first heard Marling's "Short Movie" album, and it immediately became a favorite, and that is a rare event in my listening career. However, this album overtook it after a few listens. The opening 4-song suite, as mentioned previously, is amazing. I don't know how Marling experienced the sort of life events that inspired all of this intensity, but it is quite incredible to experience it in this way. As intense as her vocals and lyrics are, her guitar skills are awfully impressive too. She has captured my attention more than just about any other artist out there right now ... the other contenders are Lisa Hannigan, Hurray for the Riff Raff, and Emiliana Torrini, but oh boy, this album makes Laura Marling the best of the bunch right now.
During the first third of this album, Marling pulls off a tricky musical feat. The first four songs share the same key and are strung together as one continuous suite. "Take The Night Off", "I Was An Eagle", "You Know" and "Breathe" are breathtaking on their own, but when heard as one longer piece the effect is overpowering. With each album Marling has further defined her voice and personal style. "Once I was An Eagle" is when Marling's talent becomes truly undeniable. Listen to this one with headphones. Marling's voice deserves to be as close as possible to your ears.
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