Five albums in eight years says everything it needs to about the productivity and creative output of Laura Marling on its own. When 2014’s ‘Short Movie’ was conceived following a revelationary period for Marling, travelling around America on her own and taking in all that it brought her, the wheels were turning again for a singer who released four widely adored LPs before she turned 24.
The ‘Short Movie’ tour is still in progress, and took in dates in South America last month. While Marling’s fifth album barely feels like it’s had time to settle in, it appears that work on its follow-up is already in progress - hardly a surprise for the country’s most productive son, but news to get seriously excited about.
‘Short Movie’ saw Marling growing in her own skin - new song ‘Wild Fire’ is the sound of this confidence being taken further, and Marling becoming embedded in a sound that’s all hers. It’s a track that’s supremely confident from the start, and one that has the feeling of all those folk megastars she’s been pinned to emulate.
Album six is rumoured to be called ‘Semper Femina’, which translates from Latin as ‘Always A Woman’. While ‘Short Movie’ had a clear purpose and narrative, arriving after the slightly confused and turbulent release and tour of 2013’s ‘Once I Was An Eagle’, ‘Semper Fermina’ looks to have been conceived outside of these pressurised, urgent situations. As such, Wild Fire’ is a gloriously free introduction into the sixth age of Laura Marling, and tackle topics outside of herself and her struggles. It’s an extremely exciting proposition.
If the deep dark whole of the internet is to be believed, Marling has already played the entirety of ‘Semper Femina’ live, in Chicago back in November, and looks to be ten songs long. It’s an astonishing feat, when almost all of Marling’s time since the release of ‘Short Movie’ has been spent touring that album.
The next proper look we’ll get at the next steps of Laura Marling will come with a series of support slots with Neil Young at arenas around the UK, and it looks like the perfect opportunity to road-test more of ‘Semper Femina’. Though she’s supporting Young at these shows, ‘Wild Fire’ shows Laura Marling to be growing, adapting and changing more than ever coming into album six, and soon she’ll be on the way to being regarded in the same breath as the Dylans, Youngs and Mitchells she’s grown up adoring.
Laura Marling will play Meltdown Festival (10th-19th July), where DIY is an official media partner. Tickets are on sale now. Visit diymag.com/presents for more information.
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