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Laura Mvula

Sing To The Moon

Laura Mvula
8
UK singer-songwriter Laura Mvula seemingly popped out of nowhere to deliver her dreamy debut, Sing To The Moon, an album that shines with earnestness, was composed with deftness and presented with the bearing of a more journeyed artist. The 25-year-old immediately invites comparisons to a modern day Nina Simone, with acute "Erykah Badu meets Jill Scott" sensibilities. "Like the Morning Dew" kicks it off with layered brightness, setting the tone. "Make Me Lovely" is as orchestral brassy as all get out, letting listeners know that this isn't your standard retro-soul affair. Giddy, Simone-esque single "Green Garden," the sociological statement of "It's Alright" and the superlative title track combine to show that Mvula is worthy of the hype. Indeed, the 12-track project is a revelation, but it's apparent that we're meeting Mvula at the ground floor — for all its inspired gospel, jazz and soul influences, Sing to the Moon is content to do so from a worm's-eye view, rather than at the celestial heights of its projected target. It's a solid album from Mvula, but "beguiling potential" only begins to describe the musical authority this debut merely alludes to. (Sony)
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