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I Speak Because I Can

4.5 out of 5 stars 30 customer reviews

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Audio CD, April 6, 2010
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Editorial Reviews

2010 sophomore album from the British singer/songwriter. I Speak Because I Can is Laura Marling's coming of age album, its 10 songs imbued with a new richness, ripeness and sophistication. It is also an album marked by its quintessential Englishness. For all its American instrumentation, its shades of Crosby Stills and Nash, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Leonard Cohen, its American producer, these songs are no pale Americana interpretation; rather they are tales deeply rooted in England.
  • Sample this album Artist (Sample)
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 6, 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Astralwerks
  • ASIN: B00371M8ZO
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #161,835 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Red on Black TOP 500 REVIEWER on June 5, 2010
Format: Audio CD
Laura Marling carries a huge weight on her young shoulders, She is still only 20 and yet following an astonishing debut album and a clutch of singles not least of all the brilliant "New Romantic" which she deliberately choose to leave off "Alas I cannot swim" the expectation around this second album is huge. In addition her personal life has become a factor (like it or not). The very public outpouring of heartbreak angst from her ex Charlie Fink of Noah and the Whale on "The First days of spring" has sealed this. Oh and just for good measure her very close chums in the album's backing band Mumford and Sons are currently as popular in the UK as Peyton Manning is at the Indianapolis Colts.

What makes her so special? The answers are vulnerability, versatility and voice. This sophomore album displays all these qualities in good measure. It is an incredibly mature set of songs containing a number of latent classics and potentially the best female voice I have heard since the young Joni Mitchell. Sorry if you think this hyperbole but with talent like this why be measured?

Having listened to this album constantly on repeat since the Times kindly streamed it (and be assured the Amazon order is in) it confirms an enormous step forward and not least since she has avoided the obvious rerun of her debut and some of its more commercial elements. The above paper has called it a "very British album - think snow-covered England, blackberries and cold noses". This description goes someway to capturing its atmospherics of folk rock but not the lyrical depth and breadth which many of her contemporaries lack.

Overall what is noticeable are the many echoes of Dylan on this album.
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Format: Audio CD
...Upon first listening to it, I assumed that this amazing singer and songwriter gracing my ears must be at least in her late 20s with a wealth of music and experience behind her. Of course, I was wrong. Just like any music, hers is difficult to explain. I would describe it as closer to British folk, but definitely influenced by American country and folk music. Her voice has an old and wise quality to it, but sometimes her youth reveals itself. The melodies are driven by her guitar playing and great vocal lines, but are sometimes accompanied by simple percussion, violin, and a male back-up singer. However, just because the music is simple, don't let it fool you. Her lyrics are beautiful and deep with meaning; something to be appreciated in the newer folk scene. I also enjoy that (at least from what I can tell from the music videos I've watched) she doesn't seem to be self-obsessed pop star. She has an old-fashioned beauty that comes through her music and lyrics...

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Format: Audio CD
I got the first Laura Marling cd after hearing one of her songs on NPR. While I really liked that cd, this second cd is much much better. She has an amazingly rich voice which gives power to all of these songs. I love the way this album heads to the folk tradition more strongly than her last album.

For me, lyrics are as important as the melody, and Laura's crafted poetry in these songs. I would highly recommend this cd to anyone who's into strong female voices (such as Joni Mitchell, Ani Difranco, Regina Spektor).
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Format: Audio CD
This sophomore album shows a great deal of musical maturation since her first album (which I found to be full of meandering, undeveloped, and almost monotonous songs--sorry if you liked it). This is almost the opposite. I'm not sure how much of this bears the influence of her producer, Ethan Johns, but Marling is going to be a force to contend with in the future if she was only 20 when she wrote this album. The melodies are strong and complex, and the instrumentation is multi-layered and rich. The blend of English and American folk roots is elegant, and as someone else said, you can hear on this album how much she and Marcus Mumford come from the same family, although her music is certainly distinct. Like Mumford's songwriting, there's no sign of the heavy imitation that you often hear from songwriters that young--seems to be a sign of greatness to come. A truly solid album that will be around for a long time.
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Format: Audio CD
I'm surprised the few reviews of this album are so divided; I think most of it is really excellent. Sure, there are some clear favorites - "Rambling Man" is absolutely stunning - and I do wish a few of the songs had that same intensity. But still, the album works as a whole and is very good even in its quieter moments. Nicely done.
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By 8sox on January 4, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I think this is my favorite Laura Marling record. Im a big Mumford and Sons fan and recommend those fans to her music
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Format: MP3 Music
Laura Marling solidifies her genius on her second album. No sophomore slump in site here. Her first album left you wondering who was this talented, beautiful, and creative folk artist. 'I Speak Because I Can' says "I am Laura Marling and I'm here to stay". Her voice, her lyrics, her creativity - I mean can music get any finer or more beautiful.

If you have not heard of this English goddess, get on the boat now before it sails away. She's just that good. If your a fan of Noah and the Whale, Mumford and Sons, The Civil Wars, or pretty much good quality music with actual creative talent then you will like Laura Marling.

I enjoyed her first album as well. But to me this is Laura stomping her foot down to let us know she is here and ready for her time. I don't doubt she will have a long and bright future ahead in music. Her voice is incredible. Some of my favorites are Rambling Man, Devil's Spoke, and Hope in the Air. But honestly this is one that you need the complete album. So get it and enjoy!
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