Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Albums Of 2015: Olivia Chaney - The Longest River

It's been a fantastic year for the Ladies Of Music in 2015. The quality of some of the female singer/songwriters around at the moment is simply astonishing. I've been privileged to catch a lot of them live but some I haven't caught up with yet - but it's only a matter of time.

Up there with the Best Albums of 2015 is The Longest River - the debut release by Olivia Chaney.

The Longest River is a collection of self-penned songs and some beautifully selected covers.

Just a quick word about the production, which is crystal clear and co-produced with Eno collaborator Leo Abrahams, It has an almost Scandinavian clarity and precision. Simple but very effective. 

Having studied at The Royal Academy Of Music, Olivia brings a certain sophistication to the proceedings with Norwegian Jazz composer's Sidsel Endresen's Blessed Instant and There's Not A Swain by Henry Purcell.

One of the highlights of the album is a stunning version of Alasdair Roberts' Waxwing

With a lovely, clear voice, Olivia has the ability to seduce and admonish within the same song. An exceptionally skillful thing to master.

Olivia plays guitar, piano and harmonium. The sound on the album is delicate and painted in pastel colours. Olivia's voice is clear and pure, almost glacial but also has a warmth - if that makes any sense. On several tracks, especially on piano, you can see Olivia's Jazz training in chord structure. It's a very individual sound with her folk sensibilities entwined within the song structure and presentation, it's a delicate and heady blend.

In 2013, Olivia was nominated for two BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards - The Horizon Award and Best Original Song for her song Swimming In The Longest River - showing just what a good songwriter she is.

So, seek out a copy of The Longest River and see what a lovely record it is. 

Twitter - @OliviaChaney

No comments:

Post a Comment