This latest album from folk star Kathryn Williams is a grower. If you're not familiar with Kathryn's work – often compared with Joni Mitchell and Nick Drake, then don't dismiss her at first listen. Settle down in a darkened room, turn the volume up and let her songs enchant and engulf you.
Highly regarded by the likes of Norah Jones and Dido, Kathryn shot to 'fame' with her self released debut Dog Leap Stairs, and her Mercury Music Prize nominated follow up – Little Black Numbers. Over subsequent releases she's continued to evolve her own unique brand of gloriously gentle, understated melodies and delicate arrangements.
Leave to remain is Liverpool born and Newcastle based Kathryn's sixth album, and quite possibly her best yet. As before, it features her core band of Dave Scott (guitar) and Laura Reid (cello, keyboards), but on this outing Kate St John, former woodwind maestro of The Dream Academy, and string and woodwind arranger for the likes of Van Morrison and Roger Eno was brought on board.
Renowned for her folk-pop style in the tradition of Nick Drake, Sandy Denny and Fairport Convention, Leave To Remain sees Kathryn's take a sideways step absorbing Americana that she grew up with - Dylan and Joni Mitchell – into her work.
With artistic control and a desire to follow her own path, Leave To Remain is a wistful, reflective album full of understated grace and Kathryn's uniquely beautiful breathy vocals.