Yorkshire lass Isabella Tweedle aka Billie Marten‘s debut is a rolling, low key offering, reflective of her Northern home. This packaged collection of Old English ode’s, in the style of contemporaries Laura Marling and Marika Hackman, shows non of the lyrical charm of either, rather it build’s on the idea of having nothing to say at all. You would be forgiven if you assumed that her age (17) and lack of experience failed to harness any of the necessary emotion required to create a cohesive piece of music with a purpose and a structure.
Granted the songs are beautifully arranged and sonically faultless, but there is an underlying sense of complacency that permeates the whole album, binding each of its 13 songs together under a single banner of infomercial music and low budget nature documentary.
Although there is a distinct lack of versatility in Tweedle’s arrangements, she does do one thing very well; singing very forlornly. Everyone needs a good cry on occasion and why not exacerbate that misery with the help of Billie Marten? This album is the epitome of stoicism because it is quintessentially British in its outlook; a lack of emotion and a rigid conformity to the tried and tested.
Not breaking boundaries does not define an artist but I would have hoped young Tweedle had attempted to subvert and challenge the archaic notions of what it means to be a girl with a guitar. So far she has adhered to them.
Writing Of Blues And Yellows is out now via Sony Music Entertainment UK Limited.