We tell you how to listen to Lianne La Havas’ soulful new album, Blood…
Lianne La Havas’ second album packs a punch. Her voice is shown off in soulful, expressive melodies, and there are songs for all occasions. Inspired by her Jamaican and Greek roots, it’s a fusion of sounds, and arguably the summeriest (I probably invented that word but need’s must) album of 2015. Here we go through how to make the most of some of the album’s tracks.
This is the song you need to listen to on a Monday morning when you can’t face getting out of bed to the point where you’re contemplating super-gluing yourself to it just for an excuse. It begins with an almost chaotic build up of noise, before clearing into a jazzy, feel-good beat, guaranteed to make even the sleepiest of souls perk right up. The refrain ‘we are unstoppable’ is literally the ultimate motivational catchphrase. You can do this, one step at a time to a caffeinated beverage. La Havas’ voice is wonderfully silky and smooth, and the track is filled with summery synth tones. It’s a slick and soulful kaleidoscope of textures.
Green & Gold
It’s finally sunny outside, and you and your friends decide to have an impromptu barbecue, complete with paddling pool (it was going to be a DIY cinema hot tub event, but you soon realised this was implausible because you’re broke). As the afternoon turns to evening, and everyone’s had a few (eight) too many glasses of pimms, people begin to have a spontaneous boogie in the garden. This track has strong percussion and jazzy trumpet interludes, perfect for that wiggly move that awkward dancers always revert to (my move of choice).
This is the track you switch on when you’re feeling a bit down. Or perhaps you just want to be very mellow and reflective and nostalgic (maybe you’re hungover from the aforementioned barbecue). You lie in bed, tucked under your ikea duvet, with no distractions, and your curtains are probably shut (and yet somehow a single ray of sunlight seems to find its way into your eye, any way you turn). Wonderful is almost haunting in its beauty – it’s La Havas’ voice at its most powerful, and it’s her song writing at its finest.
What You Don’t Do
Once a term, you have a week where you finally seem to be on top of work. The deadlines aren’t looming, the work isn’t that impossible, and you even did extra reading (wait, what?). You feel on top of your game, practically biblical and instead of simply walking to lectures, you stride with purpose and productivity. People turn their heads and whisper, ‘who is that chirpy twit?’ You radiate efficiency, and your whole life seems more organised. This is your soundtrack for that week – the perfect anthem for tidying your room, drinking green tea, and eating quinoa (simultaneously).
It’s a Friday night, and you and your friends decide to go somewhere decidedly swanky, to spend the remainder of your student loan. You’re already making good decisions. You visit a wine bar you always walk past, and order a bottle of the house red (everything else is actually this month and next months loan). You’re wearing dark lipstick, and you feel cultured. The bar is low-lit with exposed brick walls and the guys serving drinks have hipster beards. This may be the one night at university that doesn’t end with cheesy chips. It also probably won’t be because… cheesy chips.
You have a date. You’re looking phenomenal. You’re feeling sassy. You walk, nay; you strut, down the street on your way to meet your friend’s brother’s friend (or some other equally tenuous connection…or a tinder date, whatever floats your goat). If there was ever a time to exude charisma and confidence, it’s now. Midnight is brassy, alluring and charming, and you can’t help but feel a little more ‘cool’ when listening to it. Maybe your date will think you’re cool too. We hope so, we really do.
It’s the end of a big night, and everyone’s sitting in the kitchen eating all the carbohydrates. People are a mellow kind of tipsy; they want to discuss socialism, the British education system, and David Cameron, regardless of the fact that they have no actual clue about any of those topics. To accompany such (supposedly) sophisticated conversation, they need equally mature music. Ghost is serious, almost sobering, but definitely sophisticated. It’s hard to believe La Havas is only 25, and this track shows just how much she has come into her own with this album. What a way to end the evening.
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