Linda Em – ‘London Irish’ EP

❉ If Marianne Faithfull has a successor, Linda Em is a worthy placeholder, writes Eoghan Lyng.

“Linda Em made a name for herself bellowing out blues and rock ’n’ roll around the various London pubs and there’s a raw sound to these recordings, a work of feminine egality and expressed sexuality, and classic Americana pub rock, with the fiery integrity of Patti Smith and Leonard Cohen’s delectable touch for the cerebral and soulful.”

“Still I fly”. Linda Em opens this EP with Wild Fire, performed with the fiery integrity of Patti Smith with Leonard Cohen’s delectable touch for the cerebral and soulful. The Irish songstress sings over a cascade of pianos, guitars, drums and gospel backing vocals on a four track work that worked its way through London and Dublin. Fiery in sound and lyric, this is an excellent soul ballad and a strong opener to the four part E.P.

“If you watch Game of Thrones, for instance, you’ll see that Wild Fire was one of their deadly weapons of choice. The fear of wild fire is indeed a fantastic metaphor for human passion and love and energy that could not be controlled or tamed,” – Linda Em.

She made a name for herself bellowing out blues and rock ’n’ roll around the various London pubs and there’s a raw sound to these recordings, classic Americana pub rock, rough in riff and production. Carving through a palette of acoustic guitars strung and headed, this is vintage and efficient rock, Little Lightmaker sounds like the punch the largely execrable Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino needed to keep the Arctic Monkeys crown as chief rockers.

She wears her past influences through shuffle beats and acoustic sounds belying slide guitars and harmonies. Discussing her work to Eight Miles Higher she described her process as a “taste for all things that came before me. While my peers were reaching for Prodigy I was listening to Janis Joplin and Carole King”. Her 2015 debut Shadow Lands (C.S. Lewis acknowledged on the cover) paid tribute to these artists and that ilk and then some again with her own musicality and originality.

This goes back further musical time, as she sings of Hank Williams waltzing and pulls off a pianoey chanson with Piaf resonances on middle track Two Hands. She duets with Gavin Glass on Wild Fire , a punchy blend of Celtic theme and Americana feel.

“This is definitely more of love story or indeed a power battle. If you watch Game of Thrones, for instance, you’ll see that Wild Fire was one of their deadly weapons of choice. The fear of wild fire is indeed a fantastic metaphor for human passion and love and energy that could not be controlled or tamed,” says Linda Em. “The song is also an expression of a woman’s desire for freedom and the sadness that comes when two lovers simply aren’t right for each other. Even if they have this intense love, we realise as we get older, that love alone just isn’t enough.”

White Horse, complete with Celtic emblem representing the lyrical spacities and realities it wishes to convey in words more ethereal than real is brought to life by the record’s most likeable melody.It borders the insane with shining terrains of inspired vocal brilliance. If Marianne Faithfull has a successor, Linda Em is a worthy placeholder.

It’s a work of balladry, feminine egality and expressed sexuality. It covers the scales of Irishness within the sceneries and landscapes histiographically and historically traced within the means of musical passion and songs. Refreshingly short of over-long musical passages, the E.P. is punchy, direct and never outstays its welcome. She joins Hozier and Imelda May in making the Celtic Americana scene exciting again.


❉ The ‘London Irish’ EP will be available through the regular online stores and streaming platforms as of September 21, 2018, and will also be available on CD from Talking Elephant Records.

❉ Keep up with Linda Em:
Site | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | YouTube | Soundcloud | iTunes | Spotify | Press contact

Eoghan Lyng is a writer, part-time English teacher and full-time lover of life.

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