on 23 February 2014
The Radio 2 Folk Awards fortunately happened near my birthday so I've treated myself to a few albums that impressed me from them. I hadn't heard anything by Lisa Knapp before but after listening to 'The Shipping Song' I was mesmerised. I didn't think someone could make singing the shipping areas of the British Isles sound hauntingly beautiful but Lisa Knapp has managed it. There are elements of Bjork and Kate Bush but she has enough unique idiosyncrasy to be completely her own artist. Highly atmospheric and for someone who lives on the coast and loves the sea it conjures up the elements, the seasons and raw nature. It also shows that folk can encompasses many different facets and is one of the most innovative and interesting music genres to be involved and interested in and long may it continue to be so.
on 26 March 2015
She's not a huge name, and given her somewhat quirky style, she may never be, but don't let that put you off. Although I have over a thousand CDs in my collection, and have owned this one for over a year now, this little beauty keeps finding its way onto my CD player. And it really is a beauty. But, what I think makes this a particularly standout release is its originality; Lisa Knapp probably sounds like nothing else you've heard before (although the title of this review tells you where I think she's coming from). Furthermore, she is joined/supported on this release by some of folks outstanding current crop; James Yorkston, Martin Carthy, Alasdair Roberts and Kathryn Williams. I think that says a lot about what her contemporaries think of this artist too.
However, none of that means a jot to my taste unless there is a voice to match, and thankfully there is; LK has a wonderfully original voice that does remind me quite a lot of Bjork, and no bad thing.
Very very highly recommended.
on 8 October 2013
It's very rare that you find an album where each song is as good as the previous one and stands out so well on it's own, and also has so much musical beauty not to mention many unique and original qualities, and still moves seamlessly (excuse the pun) to the next one. All 9 songs on Hidden Seam are like this in my opinion, there isn't a duff track on it. You can tell that a good deal of time has been spent, and fun has been had creating this beautiful piece of art.
I listened to it for the first time on my phone travelling through London on trains and tubes and was in a pleasant dreamy daze when I arrived at my destination. You can really hear the quality in the wonderful production of this incredible musical tapestry on headphones (I'd also recommend listening to it in a comfy chair on a good sound system, with the volume turned up...it deserves that) and all the little quirky sounds, piano, strings and layers that add to the mix of each song. The production is rich and well balanced. Then on top of this you have Lisa Knapp's stunningly beautiful vocals and cleverly thought out lyrics delivered with some equally beautiful melody lines. WOW! End result - a fresh modern sounding album of beautiful songs with depth and clarity.
She's taken "folk" music to another level.
Stand out songs - All of them!
on 8 October 2013
I don't know how I can have managed not to have heard of Lisa Knapp before this summer. It's rare that I hear a tune on the radio that makes me want to stop and listen, but that was the effect of 'Two Ravens'. Many, many listens later I still find this song wonderful and mesmerising. And that is a fair description of this whole album. Yes, distinctly 'folk', but this is original, pure and modern music which really defies categorisation. In some ways I'm reminded of mid period Kate Bush - that sense of invention, and great care over each moment, and yet delivered so naturally and seemingly effortlessly. I thought of one person with great taste in music who I knew would love this. I proudly sent a link 'think you might like this', to which he promptly responded - 'yes I do, love the first album too'. I confess, once I'd heard Two Ravens, I had to have this album as soon as possible - so ordered from the publisher (with signed copy to boot) and not from Amazon as it wasn't listed then. I'm here writing this now because there is no way this album can be allowed to remain a secret amongst musos - no reviews? - wake up people and buy it! - truly something special. Can't wait to hear the first album!