Release Date: Aug 19, 2008
Record label: Astralwerks
Genre(s): Rock, Alternative
To go by this debut, which was written well before she turned 18 last week, Laura Marling's "adolescence" was essentially a protracted period of soaking up Joni Mitchell and Bonnie "Prince" Billy. The unnervingly grown-up Alas I Cannot Swim is the result, and if it doesn't install her as the heir to the likes of Devendra Banhart, there's no hope for folk-pop. Simplicity is the key: playing acoustic guitar and singing in a gentle verge-of-womanhood voice, she keeps things homespun and rootsy.
Due to her youth (16 when she first hit Myspace, 17 when signed to an imprint of EMI, and 18 when her debut album came out), perky-cute looks and extremely British diction, singer/songwriter Laura Marling got a lot of comparisons to Lily Allen in her early buzz, but the quietly compelling Alas I Cannot Swim is not at all a frothy pop confection. A folk-tinged AAA pop record based on Marling's alluringly husky voice and graceful acoustic guitar, Alas I Cannot Swim would be more aptly compared to the likes of Feist, Keren Ann, or Regina Spektor. (In the album's press kit, Marling reveals her primary influence to be Bonnie "Prince" Billy, which also seems appropriate.
“On a mission to bring the music industry back down to earth. Young singer song writter desporate to leave school and move to london. Looking for people to let me support them. Well in to indi music thogh not impressed by this new indi scene of constant rolling out of new bands and the whole scencster image tho i am one of them but at least i know it....where did the indi in individual go ay.