Laura Mvula announces her tour, tickets available through Gigantic.
See her at:
* O2 Manchester Ritz
* Asylum, Hull
* O2 Institute Birmingham
* O2 Academy Bristol
* De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill on Sea
Award winning Laura Mvula has a stunning singing voice as exhibited on her Top 10 album Sing To The Moon. Her song Little Girl Blue featured on the soundtrack to the film 12 Years A Slave. She has captivated and international audience and recently returned to the charts with her second album The Dreaming Room.
Growing up in the suburbs of Birmingham, Mvula developed her talent by singing in the a cappella band Black Voices which had been setup by her Aunt. In 2008 she started her very own group called Judyshouse. Placing herself as the lead singer and the groups writer, the music was predominantly informed by jazz and neo-soul. The experience gained from working in the two acts combined with her superb voice and talents for writing made her the perfect choice to become Director of the Litchfield Community Gospel Choir which she became in 2009.
Mvula began to write new material and create demos on her laptop and send them out to various persons in the music industry. Her tracks were heard by composer Steve Brown who passed them on to his manager Kwame Kwaten who also took her on. Despite her obvious abilities, Mvula was crippled with stage fright when being made to perform industry showcases but still managed to shine resulting in signing to Sony subsidiary RCA.
Her first LP was entitled Sing To The Moon and was released in 2013. A huge commercial success, the record reached #9 in the UK Album Charts and saw her win Best Female Act and Best R&B Or Soul Artist at MOBO Awards.
Laura Mvula today announces her highly anticipated new album ‘Pink Noise’, due for release on July 2nd via Atlantic Records. Along with the album announcement, Laura has shared her defiant new single ‘Church Girl’ which is out now.
About her new single Laura says, “I am not my story. For so long I identified as the things that happen in my life, the things I do, good or bad. I’m letting go of this mind-made ‘me’. I’m coming home to myself beyond the realm of form. I am not the thoughts in my head, or the things I achieve, or the shape of my haircut. I no longer ‘dance with the devil’ on my back. I’m basking in the light of knowing my true self, the deeper ‘I’.”
Laura Mvula tickets are available through Gigantic. Book yours today!
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Contrasting confessional lyricism with compelling and infectious synth pop, ‘Pink Noise’ feels completely and uniquely Laura. Her artistic prowess knows no limits -take the neo-soul meets art pop of ‘Remedy’ for example, or the darker, pulsating ‘Conditional’ that injects bombastic funk into indietronica. She feels rejuvenated too, especially on electro pop stunners ‘Magical’ and ‘Before The Dawn’. This is Laura Mvula at her most ambitious to date, leaving no stone left unturned in this cosmic new realm.
New single ‘Church Girl’ follows the release of ‘Safe Passage’ earlier this month, which The Independent described as “ambitious and uplifting”, along side gal-dem who said “her vocal is powerfully refined over lush swathes of synths and drums that leap like shooting stars”. Both tracks exemplify Laura’s euphoric and ethereal synth-pop inspired sound, and feature on her first album in 6 years. Last week Laura showcased her stellar new material with an appearance on Later With Jools Holland, and she will also be performing her new single on The Graham Norton Show on 26th March.
As one of the most exciting musical talents to come out of the UK, Laura has previously won an Ivor Novello Award for Best Album, has been nominated for the Mercury Prize (not once but twice), BBC Sound Poll, the BRITs Critics Choice Award, two BRIT Awards in 2014 (British Female Solo Artist and British Breakthrough Act) and won an incredible two MOBO’s in 2013 (Best Female and Best R&B/Soul).
Having caught the attention of her musical hero Prince while performing for the first of two times on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury, Laura has gone on to travel the world, selling out shows and captivating crowds at every destination. Crowned “Queen of the Prom” and given a five star review from the Evening Standard for her Proms 2014 Late Night performance at the Royal Albert Hall, Laura’s critically acclaimed career has led her to work with real-life inspirations Nile Rodgers and touring with David Byrne.
Artist bioTwo things: don't call Ivor Novello-winning singer-songwriter Laura Mvula's unapologetic,80s pop-referencing new album Pink Noise a comeback record. “I've always been here,” shes miles, “I just took some time to do what I needed to do.” Secondly, this isn't Laura Mvula2.0. It's not as simple as that. “Let's go with Laura Mvula 4.5,” she laughs. “Honestly, doing this record nearly killed me. Not literally, obviously, but in some sense.” While it's musical inspirations lean heavily into the vibrant pop Mvula loved growing up - Michael and Janet Jackson, Prince, Earth, Wind & Fire, Chic, the list goes on - it's an album borne out of both intense struggles and the positive realisations that come when you emerge reborn the other side. Lyrically it touches on ideas around break-ups - both personal and professional - but also a hard won appreciation for “being present and being in the moment. ”It's all there on the album's delicious lead single, Church Girl, an 80s-era Whitney Houston-esque slice of effortlessly euphoric pop that turns the spotlight inwards while careening towards the dancefloor. “I was the original pop head in my family, I'm obsessed with pop,” she says, acknowledging the shift from the more experimental, baroque soul of her first two albums, 2013's Sing to the Moon and2016's The Dreaming Room, both of which were Mercury nominated. “For some reason when I made Sing to The Moon that sound became permanently attached to me in people's heads. Like having the same hairstyle for the rest of your life, which for me is unthinkable. So this album was such are lease.” While her first two albums were successful, both critically and commercially, Mvula found herself at a crossroads at the start of 2017. Having parted ways with her old label, she even contemplated a new career altogether. “I probably did look at teaching jobs on a rainy afternoon but the truth of it was that there was initially a period of freedom,” she says. “I could enjoy the fact that I had some kind of platform but I didn't have to answer to anyone. I could, for the first time, ask the question, what do I want to do?” In May of that year The Dreaming Room won the coveted album of the year award at the prestigious Ivor Novello awards, an accolade that gave Birmingham-born Mvula- a classically trained musician, let's not forget - hope for her future in music. Suddenly she had time to look back on how she was perceived, and to look at the bigger picture. “Growing up my parents always said to me and my siblings that as young black people we were going to have to work a hundred times harder just to get in the room, and that for me meant literally attempting to create a new genre of music,” she says. “So if I was going to do this thing I was going to have to invent something to go 'hey, I'm here'. I was learning that I was perceived as this artist who was very 'special' and it was 'pop but it's not pop, it's jazz but it's not jazz, it's classical but it's not classical, it's black but it's not black'. I realised that a lot of this game was about justifying being in the room in the first place. Because I was doing something that couldn't be neatly boxed. With this new album the re is something hugely relieving about leaning heavily into a style of music - that 80s cosmic landscape - that has always been in my spirit.” At the start of 2018 Mvula was asked to support the legendary David Byrne on his critically-lauded American Utopia in the UK. It was, she says, a game changer. “Not just being invited, which in itself was such a high honour, but because it meant that I had to think about creativity again.” It also meant using that boundless creativity in new ways. “I was so bored of people being like 'sit at the piano and sing'- I'm not a cabaret performer. It's not my thing. So then I started to think about how I could make a big sound with just me and maybe one other person. Then we developed this idea of making everything electronic and not committing to any form with all the previous material. I'd torn it all apart and put it together again in a way that made sense to me at the time. No one else.” It was a revelation, and slowly a more uninhibited Mvula started to emerge. It was after the London show that Mvula had a meeting with her new label Atlantic Records, only she didn't have any new music to play them, just an idea of where she wanted to head next. “I started seeing creative paths like Jacob Collier or even Janelle Monae. These are artists whose music I admire and they have managed to thrive doing what they love the way they want to do it.” Despite everything that had happened, her engrained confidence in her own abilities started to shine through. “The things we believe in our core, the stories we tell ourselves over and over, I know one of mine has always been 'I will make magical music'. There's nothing anyone can do, including myself, to tear down this very pure and authentic vow that I made to my creative self from ages ago.” The first song to slowly emerge was Pink Noise's grand-standing album opener, Safe Passage. “It was a weekend and my mum was knocking on the door reminding me to eat,” she says of its intense creation. “I didn't wash. It was such a beautiful time.” It was a breakthrough moment, all started initially in Mvula's makeshift “box room” studio in her house. The throbbing, slightly sinister-sounding Conditional, a searingly honest (“another blow to the ego, a victim of conditional love”) synth workout emerged at the same time. “AfterSafe Passage I didn't want people to get confused and think 'ah, she's doing her nice music',” she laughs. “I wanted to nip that in the bud quite quickly. I did the beat at home and I thought it was funny because it sounded like a beat or someone else.” She eventually took that demo and other gestating future classics into a studio with New Zealand producer Dann Hume, who gave her the space to work out what it could be. “With Dann, anything I throw into the air he's able to catch it with me rather than be someone that goes 'eh, not sure what that's going to be'.” It's a working relationship that's paid dividends, be it on the elasticated funk of armour-plated pop goliath Remedy (“my favourite song on the album”), or the stadium-sized ballads Golden Ashes and Magical. “It's like wanting so much to be seen and heard and validated through the tools I know best how to use which is melody, harmony and groove,” she says of the fact her ballads rarely fade into the background. “I need your attention.” For the album's title Mvula knew she needed something that would sum up the vibrancy of the music, and also work with the slightly sci-fi angle of February's spectacular Under a PinkMoon livestream in which she re-worked some of her older hits in a more synth-lead context(there was also an EP, 1/f). Pink noise is a scientific term - sort of the opposite of white noise - that Mvula stumbled across while having a “nerdy lockdown afternoon” and watching a tutorial online. “It was half an hour long and literally30 seconds in I knew I wasn't going to make it through it all,” she laughs. “Then the guy leading it says 'this is where we have pinknoise' and I was like 'that's it!' and stopped the video.” The more she researched the more she started employing pink noise's blend of more intense low-frequency tones and softer high-frequency tones on the album itself. Part of what these frequencies can help with is recalling lost memories, which feels apt when presented with the spectacular Pink Noise and its ability to recall the brilliance of 1980s pop while keeping it fresh. For its creator it's also the album that reminded her of her value: “Growing up, I was always made to feel that I was someone special.” Pink Noise is further evidence of that.
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