Lianne La Havas, the English singer / songwriter / guitarist who’s Mercury Prize-nominated debut Is Your Love Big Enough? was named Album of the Year in 2012 by iTunes UK, has returned with sophomore album Blood. Inspired by a trip with her mother to visit their ancestral homeland of Jamaica, La Havas has pushed the boundaries of her sound on Blood by exploring rhythms, grooves, and syncopations. Partially recorded on the island, with production by dancehall star Stephen McGregor, the album also includes tracks recorded with Jamie Lidell, Paul Epworth (FKA Twigs, Adele) and reflects the influence of artists La Havas has recently worked including Prince & Alt-J.
Blood is a layered album, rooted in the traditions of r&b, jazz but with decidedly modern elements. Singles “Unstoppable” and “What You Don’t Do” are neo-soul anthems that feel timeless and universal, the expansive “Grow” and stormy “Never Get Enough” find La Havas experimenting with dynamics and timbres inspired by art rock, while ballad “Wonderful” strips away all artifice with a poignantly simple arrangement. The album strikes the right balance between La Havas’ stunning vocal talent and her desire to push her sound by taking musical risks. Blood is a successful evolution from the artist, solidifying Lianna La Havas as a rising star and adding unprecedented depth to her signature soothing, airy, and bold sound.
“An almost seamless album. Tracks flow into one another with the fluidity and serenity of rain into a freshwater pond—light, refreshing, natural. But there is substance moving here, weight in the currents. …Deft and adaptive, at once inspiring dancing and melancholy reflection: La Havas is always in motion.”
“An acoustic folk-rock-soul sound that is unique, and what’s best is that heavy voice of hers: This London singer sounds like she’s singing straight to your soul.”
RIYL: Janelle Monae, Jessie Ware, St. Vincent, Feist, Laura Marling, Laura Mvula
Recommended Tracks: #3 “What You Don’t Do”, #1 “Unstoppable”, #9 “Never Get Enough”, #2 “Green & Gold”, #8 “Ghost”
Going for Adds 8/3 & 8/4