How have we been sleeping on the English folk-soul phenomenon that is Lianne La Havas? Forgive us, because now that we’re acquainted, we can’t get enough.
Listening to La Havas is like hearing equal parts Amy Winehouse and Corinne Bailey Rae coo through your speakers. Her debut album, Don’t Wake Me Up, is a lengthy and well-written tribute to finding yourself amidst the chaos of a broken relationship. The title track opens up the album, with La Havas pleading, “don’t wake me up, I’m trying to find you,” as if she’s searching for her lost love in a half-conscious dreamlike state. On "Lost and Found," a poetic testament to the aftermath of a breakup, the soft poignancy of her haunting voice reaches out and crushes you. “You broke me and taught me to truly hate myself,” she sings as if sighing, “unfold me and teach me how to be like somebody else.” On "Forget," the pace is picked up, with an assertive La Havas aiming to put behind her the nonsense of the past. Not one to miss, both for the insistently infectious melody, or her awesome one-line quips. "Elusive" might be my favorite melody, though, as she croons, “he’s elusive and I’m awake/defiantly real, there’s nothing to fake.” The video is so beautiful, too:
Normally a dream only makes sense to the dreamer, but in La Havas’ case, being privy to the inner-workings of her mind unites us in the common experience of having to redefine ourselves outside of a relationship. Perfect for sleepy, soulful days, dreamy moments, or contemplative moods.