To call Laura Marling prolific is an understatement. Prodigy is still probably the better word for her continuous, acclaimed musical output. At the age of just 26 she’s released six albums since 2008, her latest, 2015’s Short Movie, was a more experimental break from her gently compelling folk.
But if the track she released today, “Soothing,” is any indication of what her 2017 record Semper Femina will be like, it’s more of a return to form for the young singer. The record was produced and recorded with Blake Mills in Los Angeles, and comes out March 10 via Marling’s own label, More Alarming Records.
According to a press release, the record was written mostly while Marling toured behind Short Movie, and is something of a case study. For the album, Marling told The Fader she began as if she was a man writing about a woman, then realized she didn’t need a male framework at all:
I started out writing Semper Femina as if a man was writing about a woman. And then I thought it’s not a man, it’s me — I don’t need to pretend it’s a man to justify the intimacy of the way I’m looking and feeling about women. It’s me looking specifically at women and feeling great empathy towards them and by proxy towards myself.”
The first single and video for “Soothing” is above. It also marks Marling’s directional debut, and features a woman in a patent leather leotard crawling across a bed, who is then joined by another, and things turn decidedly sexual for everyone involved — including an audience (??). It’s the opposite of soothing, but the contrast between the melody and the visual is spectacular. Watch it above.
Here’s the Semper Femina tracklist:
2. “The Valley”
3. “Wild Fire”
4. “Don’t Pass Me By”
5. “Always This Way”
6. “Wild Once”
7. “Next Time”
09. “Nothing Not Nearly”
Semper Femina will be out 3/10 via More Alarming Records. Pre-order it here.