Posted in music on September 13, 2013

by Andrew Frisicano

Laura Marling
photo via @RitaHouston

Earlier in the week, news came that Laura Marling had earned her third Mercury Prize nomination, this time for her spare, enigmatic fourth record, Once I Was an Eagle. That album, delicately produced by Ethan Johns, explores dark themes -- isolation, loss of faith, the dissolution of a relationship -- in a way that melds open-tuned guitar-work, winding melodies and a gothic lyrical sense.

The stained-glass-lined hall of St. Ann & the Holy Trinity Church, where she played Wednesday night (9/11), was an ideal place to celebrate the nod (and cap her NYC visit which also included two sold-out shows at the Music Hall of Williamsburg). In front of the gathered congregation, Marling started out with the new album's first four songs, some of her best music yet, without a pause. On stage with just a guitar -- touring with a band was getting too logistically bothersome, she quipped -- raging numbers like "Master Hunter" and "Rambling Man" didn't lose any fire in the pared down setting.

In a mid-set interview with WFUV's Rita Houston, Marling talked about her collection of records from 1969: LPs by David Axelrod, Jim Sullivan, Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazlewood. Not that those influences have leaked into her songwriting yet. And it may take a while: Looking at Marling's live set lists, she already has a cache of new tunes ready to go. A yet-to-be-recorded song, which she admitted to writing post-move, seemed to take some at least one cue from her new Los Angeles location. "One day soon I'm gonna be a movie star," she sang. The performance doubled as a live taping for NYC radio station WFUV -- listen for it later in September.

Videos and set list are below...

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Laura Marling @ St. Ann & the Holy Trinity Church 9/11/2013 setlist
"Take the Night Off"
"I Was an Eagle"
"You Know"
"Breathe"
"Master Hunter"
new song/s ("One Day Soon")
==break==
"Rambling Man"
"What He Wrote"
"Sophia"
"Once"
"Saved These Words"

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Comments (7)

Two sold out shows & one full rsvp/guest listed show. Churches don't sell and no collection plate was passed.

Posted by white dress seller(!) | September 13, 2013 6:28 PM

Powerful.

Posted by Anonymous | September 13, 2013 8:50 PM

LOL, everyone in that church was 10 years old and listening to Smashmouth when Beth Orton's first album came out.

Posted by Anonymous | September 13, 2013 10:03 PM

no, i was 16 when 'she cries your name' came out. i loved that song and i love marling now. this show was awesome and free.

Posted by Anonymous | September 14, 2013 8:42 AM

She's a nut job...anyone see her 22 minute show at McKittrick two years ago? Twenty-two f'ing minutes--it was BS!

Posted by Anonymous | September 15, 2013 2:39 AM

I wish I could have the chance to attend Laura Marling personally in her songs while she is playing her guitar. Amazing and one of my favorite singer.

Posted by Travis Jones Rush Properties | September 15, 2013 9:59 AM

It boggles my mind that Mumford and Sons were her backing band and they are more famous than her. Seriously she is so under rated and I finally think this album is gonna be her breakthrough album so others can discover how amazing she is. Thator maybe she had an oppourtunity to be famous and chose not to. Maybe it is the latter. But people need to hear her more.

Posted by Cecelia | October 7, 2013 12:56 PM

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