Once I was an Eagle

steerpike's picture

Laura Marling is doubtless an incredible talent, but am I alone in thinking things are starting to get ... dare I say ...a little mannered. And where's all this angst coming from? Just how tough has it been for a posh girl from Hampshire?

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just spent a long weekend in the New Forest I can report that it is like a war zone there. Ponies roaming everywhere. It tiggered several bouts of angst amongst family Corg.

Clearly I meant to type "triggered" not tiggered. As any fule knows Tigger lived in Ashdown Forest (Sussex) with Pooh and Christopher Robin etc, not the New Forest (Hampshire).

Singing Redemption Song or holed up in a bunker preventing the tarmac'ing of a car park just off the A31?

is strictly an A22 kind of guy.

You don't often see a proper tiggerlion like that. I'd use it for my virtual image but it won't squeeze into 36x36 pixels.

- that could explain it...

She has the angst of any young person. Then she feels guilty for being both extremely privileged and angst-ridden, which creates more angst.

I always sleep with a flak jacket and a machete. None more ghetto here! BOOM!

Frey? Henley? My money's on Meisner

for whom Life's Been Good and therefore no reason at all for angst.

But who's to say what's round the corner?

if I'm remembering correctly

... that she'd previously played Rugby League in South Yorkshire. Guess I was wrong....

...cricket in the mighty Essex.

she's a bit miffed that Palace have now got into the Prem after giving up on them a few years ago.

Arlington is a tricky track for any novice speedway rider.

20 all out. Embarrassing enough, but inflicted by Lancashire of all teams.

No, you're not alone. That American accent, concentration of the vocal in the lower register, the half-talking, the lack of proper tunes, the noodling guitar, the songs that just never get going. With a couple of exceptions, a MAJOR disappointment. But there were danger signs in the closing few tracks on "A Creature I Don't Know" and her relocation to California.

Such as shame.

her new album. Very Joni.

None more mannered.

Apart from the mannered bit (not heard this new LP yet, didn't like the last one, really liked the first two) which I can't comment on, this thing about rich OR middle-class people, (especially those from THE HEARTLESS SOUTH OF ENGLAND WHERE NOBODY CARES ABOUT ANYONE ELSE OR EVER SPEAKS TO EACH OTHER) not being able to either a) have any feelings or problems or b) write about something they've never experienced, really gets on my bloody nerves. It's utter bollocks, isn't it? Being born near the M25 or English Channel doesn't mean your heart doesn't get broken, doesn't mean you don't get ill, doesn't mean people around you don't die, does it? Money doesn't buy you immunity from anything bad ever happening to you or anyone you know. And even if it did, you don't need to have worked as a miner or a docker (and I'm making an educated guess here than almost none of you have done so either), to write about it do you?

You don't have to be poor - and preferably from Northern England - to be "authentic", you know. Besides, those who yearn only for "authenticity" in music are utter tits, in my opinion.

Sorry if I touched a nerve JoLean. Light and shade though, don't you think? And surely not everyone who yearns for authenticity is an utter tit?

You didn't touch a nerve (except perhaps one about southerners all being rich and heartless. Blame Paul Morley for his Book of the Week on Radio 4 for that) at all. I just like to express my opinion clearly: definitely nothing personal!

Although I do think 'authenticity' is a nonsense in pop music.

I was being a bit flippant to make a point. Strangely I like the album - the second half anyway - would just have liked a bit of break from the relentless introspection.

If you crave authenticity you end up listening to Seasick Steve & CJ Stoneking.

Represents in one handy person almost everything I hate about the world. I like to imagine that Seasick Steve, far from being the 'hobo' who made it when he was 95 (or whatever he is), was really a Systems Analyst from Northamptonshire who forgot to buy a razor one day. The rest is, as they say, history (or as near to history as an appearance on Jools every two weeks equates to).

is an absolute gent. He shook my hand when I was upfront on the barrier for his Astoria show. the fact I was taping the gig at the time made me a little nervous but the goodwill and happiness in his audience is a rare and splendid thing

Authenticity is a very middle class concept in itself. NOTHING is authentic - everyone is making copies. The Beatles were copying Elvis, Elvis was copying R and B musicians, they were copying old blues players, who were copying griots brought over as slaves from Africa who were copying....

I tell you what authentic means in this context: fossilized

As to Laura Marling - she lost me on the third album. To me she isn't that far from being a female Ed Sheeran.

That's a damning comment. Ed Sheeran's success genuinely astounds me. A badly dressed little acousti-scrote with no charisma, no tunes and trite lyrics.

And a middle-class southern softie (hides behind sofa)....

Not even an authentic southern softie.

.

... she's 'avin' a go at people from Northamptonshire, now...

Agreed on every point, particularly on her first two albums, which are stunning. I didn't like the last one much either; have yet to hear this one. But every word of Jo's post is sense.

Wholly agree with JoLean about the bankrupt idiocy of this rallying cry . Does anyone truly believe that only the downtrodden working classes have the right to express themselves by making music apart from Gary Bushell? The repellent shite that was 'Oi' would seem to give the lie to that.
As for Marling, pleasant enough girl whose parents had a tasteful record collection, but no choons of her own. Thoroughly forgettable.

Can't think of anything else to add. Just - 'I agree!'.

Note to the mods - I could have refrained from this post if the simple device of 'up arrows' had been available. Don't know if you've heard of the concept, but it allows for blog-cluttering comments such as 'me too' and 'what he/she said' to be dispensed with, replaced by the simple clicking of an 'up' arrow, meaning 'I agree with' or 'I appreciate' this comment.

Might be worth considering. Click if you agree.

Oh...

after reading about her I listened to one of Ms. Marling's songs on a Word freebie (I think), after a verse or so she then sang: 'and I'm clearing all the crap out of my room.' Ok, well, that's a teenager's lot these days I spose.

I assumed she'd have a gentelwoman's personal gentlewoman to do that.

You're referencing "Goodbye England (Covered in Snow)", which is:

(a) a truly beautiful lyric;
(b) comfortably the best thing La Marling has done; and
(c) my 37th favourite song of all time (according to this list here).

I'd recommend another listen. If only to confirm first impressions. In fact, I'll make it easy by posting it here....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ppSCEaT6SIA

Making a list of your favourite songs is ok, but carrying it around with you!

You never know when they might come in handy.

As recently as Sunday somebody stopped me in the street and asked me what my 37th favourite song was. I tried to bluff but, frankly, I hesitated too long and I was exposed. Thankfully this happened in Hampshire and there was nobody around that would recognise me. Lesson learnt I'll be carrying lists including my top ten shampoos of all time in future.

That is definitely one of the top 100 comments you've contributed to this blog.

I shall update my list accordingly.

we'll have to compare lists at some point

I'm a bit averse to swearing in songs, it ain't poetic is it, which is why I gave up on it the first time round - yes I do consider 'crap' a swear-word which is why I sit and moan throughout all the American programmes on daytime telly. But, in all seriousness, it is a very nice song.

'Shit! I've trodden in some doggy doo-doo'

Strange.

...well, with the exception of the Mumfords incessant smugness, but I don't like dull pop music and Laura Marling is very very dull. OOAA of course.

I was reincarnated as a talking tapeworm. Happy days!

Has been reminding me of this all day, and it's such a lovely tune that I'm going to post it here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QZ0f5_rz4u4

my vinyl copy of LM`s 4th, after the comments I think I`ll give it a listen first, must admit the tracks I`ve heard on 6music haven`t impressed too much.

Don't see why being middle class and from Hampshire means she can't write songs expressing angst. Give me that any day over the execrable Beady Eye just witnessed on Later.

Have listened to the new album once and will reserve judgement for now - but it sounded promising to me. Certainly her first three records are as good as I can remember from anyone recently - in fact, I can't think of any British female singer/songwriter ever who has started so strongly (*ducks head and awaits Kate Bush shaped backlash*)

None as good as "The Kick Inside". But Marling's first three together beat Bush's first three, I reckon. That's why, on first listen, this new one is so disappointing. She has set the bar vert high for herself. I'm going to give it time, though. She deserves that, being a music goddess and all..

I quite like the recent stuff I've heard by her but come on!
Will anyone - male or female - ever kickstart their career with a single as amazing as Wuthering Heights?
Or a run of singles that includes Wow, Hammer Horror, Babooshka, The Man With The Child In His Eyes...
These are stone cold crossover classics. Weird but accessible. I'm sorry, but comparing just about any artist to KB is a ludicrous idea.
LM's wears her influences on her sleeve and sometimes comes up with some great stuff. Undoubtably she has a long, glittering career ahead of her. Bush is a one off - sounded like nobody else and stands alone.

But as a point of pedantry, Laura Marling - 3rd daugther of Sir Charles William Somerset Marling - is certainly not middle-class! If she was male, she'd be heir to a baronetcy.

Everything else is extraneous.

Arra.

Concise & brilliant! I'm so glad you are back.

It's very good. Much better than A Creature I Don't Know, not quite as hooky as the first two albums. In sound and feel it reminds me most of I Speak Because I Can: a sombre mood, lots of plain, unadorned voice and guitar.

She will grow to be one of the greats, IMO. It's astonishing that a 23 year old can write like this.

Like several others, I'd decided not to rush out and get the album (besides I'm having fun listening to Calexico live gigs that I've downloaded and there is only a finite amount of time for listening), but having listened to this session I think I will go and get the album soonish.

http://www.kcrw.com/music/programs/mb/mb130521laura_marling

...I love it! Got the vinyl version. My only complaints are that I need a magnifying glass to read the lyrics, so they might as well not be printed on the sleeve, and the album didn't come with a download code (so won't be able to listen on my iPod without paying for it again). Mind you, the sound quality of the vinyl album is fantastic - real depth and clarity. Whoever mastered it has done a superb job.

Me buy.