Artist to Watch

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Laura Marling Our October XPN Artist to Watch, Laura Marling's latest album is called A Creature I Don't Know, and she'll be here for an XPN Free At Noon on December 9, 2011.

Twenty-one-year-old Marling has the makings of the next great folk singer-songwriter. With a sound characterized by graceful, refined lyricism and remarkable, ear-catching melody, Marling has been taking the music world by storm. She's just released her third highly acclaimed album--quite an accomplishment for such a young artist.

Growing up surrounded by music, the 16-year-old artist made her way to London to join the 'nu-folk' movement. She became a part of indie folk outfit Noah and the Whale, and collaborated/toured with a number of acts, including Mystery Jets and The Moldy Peaches. She then debuted her solo album, "Alas I Cannot Swim" in 2008, and was promptly nominated for the Mercury Prize. I Speak Because I Can came soon after in 2010, evidence that Marling was continuing to craft her own brand of graceful folk music. This year, Marling has released A Creature I Don't Know, a dark and wonderful third album. As with her earlier work, comparisons to the likes of Dylan, Feist, Fiona Apple, and Joni Mitchell all at once can hardly be helped. Laura Marling has crafted an album both hauntingly mystifying and warmly welcoming. This album's theme could be seen as deeply personal--Marling sings of a woman struggling against herself and convention--but at the same time, it's a release that's both frustratingly hard and gratifying to try to interpret. With jazz undertones, banjo plucking, and lots of angry guitar, A Creature I Don't Know is simply mesmerizing.XPN has been captured by Marling since having her on World Cafe back in 2010, and her latest release has only served to entrance us all the more.

We're lucky enough to have Laura Marling on the stage for this week's Live Friday XPN Free At Noon! Don't miss this burgeoning young artist--it's free and it's at noon. There's no better way to start the weekend.

Recent Release: A Creature I Don't Know
Release Date: Sept. 12, 2011
Label: Virgin Records
Hometown: Hampshire, England

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