Your relationship with certain musicians and how often you listen to their stuff over the years as album succeeds album, often depends on ingrained perceptions. Some might call them prejudices. Take me and Laura Marling for example. She probably qualifies as something of a veteran by now, with over ten years as a touring and recording artist and the release of her sixth album, Semper Femina after a period of personal turmoil which you can read about here.
So what's my ingrained perception / prejudice where she's concerned. Why have I rarely bothered to listen to her records regardless of how much acclaim they've received over the years. It's the idea of her stuff as 'coffee table', I suppose. A certain, artful tastefulness aimed at a certain listening public who I don't really number myself among.
It's ridiculous really. These three selections for Semper Femina are fine things indeed. Crafted, clever chamber folk songs about the intricate nature of our emotions and relationships, skillfully delivered and exquisitely packaged, with every now and then a melodic reminder in terms of her vocals of Joni Mitchell who is probably the founder, (as much as anyone), of the tradition that Marling works within. There's a thoughtful beauty about all three of these, promising appetisers all for the forthcoming album, ready for coffee tables up and down the land. Never mind my inbuilt perceptions / prejudices which I've begun to let go in this particular case over the past twenty four hours, these deserve all the acclaim they're more than likely to get.