Billie Marten – Writing of Blues and Yellows
Ever since first hearing her stunning and surprising acoustic cover of Royal Blood’s ‘Out of the Black’, Billie has been an artist that I have kept a close eye on. At only 17 it goes without saying that this Yorkshire lass has talent far beyond her years. ‘Hello Sunshine’ bears a heavy resemblance to Nick Drake and the sparse and intimate arrangement of ‘Lionhearted’ feels as though there’s nothing else in the world besides you and her. The piano driven ‘Bird’, a fan favourite from her As Long As EP, stands out as the album’s highlight and provides the perfect chance to get lost in Billie’s fragile and angelic vocals. There’s no denying the sheer depth of beauty contained within Blues and Yellows that show Billie to be one of the most talented young songwriters around.
The album isn’t without it’s issues however. For one it is a tad too long, which is no mortal sin in of itself but sadly leads to the album feeling repetitive. After nearly an hour of restrained and melancholy folk it can start to feel a bit bleak and suffocating and perhaps best experienced in smaller doses. The album may be a one trick pony but it is one that has certainly been perfected. It is a promising debut and all it needs is the occasional bright injection of hope or big build of a more fleshed-out arrangement to bring the album to new heights. It’s not perfect but it is a debut to be proud of and it has provided all the more reason to keep a keen watch over the unfolding career of this immensely talented artist.