Battle Of Land And Sea
Laura Marling, Mazzy Star
The Battle of Land and Sea is a pleasant surprise in the world of folk/indie music. Singer, songwriter and guitarist, Sarah O’Shura is the mastermind behind this project. There are only a few instruments being used throughout this album, giving it a soft and endearing sound, making this somewhat of a loner album. As for the vocals, they are beautiful and airy, providing a sense of comfort. It’s the kind of album one could play while cozying up to a fire, going for a hike, or even just relaxing with a good book.
Opening the album is the spacious "Saltwater Queen," where just acoustics and some background atmosphere is all that is needed for this one. The lyrics are strong and paint a dark story as well. This leads us into "Brirdsong," it’s a sad kind of song and again the lyrics will keep the listener captivated. That’s one of the strong points throughout this album, the storytelling, it’s unique and each song has its own moody story to tell. Moving on to "The Beautiful Ones," where we hear some background vocals and clapping, injecting some variety into the album and making this one of the standout tracks.
Many of you may recognize track four, "Harden My Heart," yes, it’s the cover of the Quarterflash’s 1981 hit. This is a brilliant remake, turning an 80’s pop song into a saddened soulful song is quite a feat. "Six Days" is a simple and straight forward song compared to the others, still not a bad song by any means. Track six, "I Built The Sea" has a welcome echoed guitar tone throughout, giving the song some dark depth. The last two tracks "Lady" and "You Are A Sailor" are calming and soft, good songs to help relieve some stress, in fact, the whole album is a good ‘get-away’ album.
Overall, The Battle of Land and Sea is an excellent album for those into folk or indie music, it’s fresh and different. And you heavy hitters who like to branch out, give them a try, you may be surprised. - 3/14/2014
Standout Tracks: The Beautiful Ones, Saltwater Queen