Laura Marling planned on having two albums released in 2010, I Speak Because I Can, and another one. Marling decided to push back the next album so she could improve the quality, and now the anticipated A Creature I Don’t Know has finally been released.
As a solo performer, the vision Marling has for a song doesn’t get changed by jamming out with other members of a band. The honest lyrics and nothing to hide acoustic guitar make it evident Marling wants her listeners to connect and believe in her music. A song like “Salinas” is a good example of this, as Marling reveals the strength of the women in her hometown.
The folk roots she acquired at a young age from her father, who worked in a recording studio, are almost a mystically acoustic that make it seem like a gypsy might be singing. “Night After Night” has a soft but haunting echo of Marling merely talking along with the melody, instead of the folk howl that carry out most of her other melodies. Just like her unusually young ear for folk music, the 21 year-old’s voice sounds ridiculously mature. In the song “Night After Night,” Marling asks a question to her former lover, if he would “watch my body weaken, my mind drift away.” The overall tone seems as if Marling is pleading to a long-time lover that has been growing apart.
From the raw emotion in Marling’s voice, the quiet, but progressing guitar makes the pent up moments seem louder than any electric rock song. The songs start out soft and without notice, but gets more intense, like each track is just Marling getting an adrenaline rush. Another impressive trait of her album is the musical talent recorded. The songs feature unique riffs and you can almost picture Marling’s fingers plucking at each string.
WPGU Music Staff Rating: W-P-G-½
Key Tracks: “The Muse” “I Was Just a Card” and “All My Rage”
RIYL: Mumford and Sons and Noah and the Whale
W = Poor
W-P = Fair
W-P-G = Great
W-P-G-U = An instant classic!