A Spotlight on Folk(ish) Music …

The following is also a blog which I wrote for http://www.hopfarmfestival.com/blog.html . If you have a read then you’ll be sure to get the picture. Enjoy!

The Hop Farm festival have just announced their lineup and it’s looking pretty Folk and country-esque. So, I decided to blog about this ‘genre’ of music. The title ‘Folk’ isn’t really somethind that would typically apppeal to me. That’s why I decided to take a look at new Folk, scanning the horisons and giving you an idea of what’s actually out there…

Laura Marling. You’ve probably heard Miss Marling’s recent single ‘Devil’s Spoke’ from her new album ‘I Speak Because I Can’. This album embodies everything and more that you would expect from a modern Folk songstress. Although the music takes a darker tone than her debut album, ‘Alas, I Can Not Swim’, the songs are still hauntingly beautiful. I’ve literally had her music on repeat for months now. If you haven’t heard her then honestly do go and have a listen. She combines the beauty of her acoustic talents with edgy and raw vocals that would captivate even the grumpiest of listeners. I’m lucky enough to be seeing Laura Marling at the end of April, so will be sure to report back with my thoughts.

If like me you love Laura Marling, then I recommend a listen to Regina Spektor. Spektor is a loveable, Alternative-Folk singer. Since 2001 she has released a massive five albums, two of which were self released. I guess you could call her Laura Marling’s later ego, taking Folk music and adding her own Pop sparkle. Spektor is responsible for songs such as ‘Eet’ and ‘Fidelity’ which you may be familiar with. Her songs are catchy and tuneful. Even a little psychotic at times. 🙂 Her music is far from the typical music of mainstream Pop and that’s why I love it!

I also feel that I must mention Get Frank. I was lucky enough to interview Get Frank recently and she was lovely! Three words to sum her up- talkative, talented and addicitve. Get Frank may only be a student, but in my eyes she is firmly on the road to success. Get Frank incorporates anything and everything into her music, be it a ukulele or panpipes. Her voice is strikingly beautiful, whilst the accompaniments sound like they have tumbled out of a fairytale. Get Frank combines the attitude of Lily Allen with the vocal talents Florence Welch. Have a listen to ‘Leaves and Crumbs’ or ‘An Arrangement’. http://www.myspace.com/getfrankmusic

I have  recently discovered Lissie. Lissie is suspiciously similar to Laura Marling, with curling blonde hair and gorgeous acoustic numbers. However, she is far from an imitator and has plenty going for herself. Although her debut album, ‘Catching a Tiger’, is not released until June, Lissie has already proved her musical talents. Her songs ‘In Sleep’ and ‘Wedding Bells’ are addictive. Whilst she has also recorded a cover of Lady Gaga’s ‘Bad Romance’. I’m not going to lie, I’m not a big fan of Gaga. However, this cover is addictively gorgeous.

So far I have only mentioned female artists, so in an attempt to remain unbiased here are some of my male ‘Folk’ favourites. Number one- Frank Turner. Turner has released three albums, the most recent being ‘Poetry of The Deed’. His music is full of clever musical imagery and pushes the boundaries of Folk over and into the Rock genre. On a softer note, who doesn’t love Noah and the Whale? Their collaboration with Laura Marling- ‘Five Years Time’ is the perfect accompaniment for a summertime chill-out. Yes, it’s the one with the whistling, love it!


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