Self Made Folk
Gloucestershire singer/songwriter Verity Green emerged on streaming services last month with the release of her debut single, 'My Mind at Night', and it proves to be a compelling introduction to this self-made folk artist. Featuring on our monthly playlist for the Best Singles of May 2020 this track proves to be an intriguing first step for a musician preparing to establish herself in the landscape of British folk, and deserves your attention.
Starting off with some wonderfully interesting guitar/synth soundscaping + retro newscast sampling, Green's vocals quickly grasp the track with an undeniable softness. Her vocal tone is inviting, harmonies well-constructed and melodies well selected. Bestriding a sound somewhere between Wolf Alice's Ellie Rowsell and Great Grandpa's Alex "Pickleboy" Menne, above the chords of her self-recorded (and produced) single, Green sounds perfectly comfortable on the track and perfectly in place when sandwiched between some excellent sounding vocal samples that really suit the single. Settling in, the track has an urgency in its beat, but is still sedately disarming. It is a pleasant track that perfectly compliments extended periods reclined in comfort, taking in the serenity of Green's style.
The limitations of Green's recording equipment are, of course, notable - not that that should discourage her at all - but going forward a few adjustments could definitely be made to get the most out of her tracks. Though the reverb-soaked vocal delivery is a nice (and very much popular) trend at the moment, 'My Mind At Night' has taken this a little too far, making it actively quite difficult to hear exactly what the words are that the artist is singing. The very highest frequencies of her recording, too, could be rolled down a little to prevent hissing and sharpness in her tune. The tuning of the track looses focus a little towards the end, and while this might be a deliberate artistic choice, in keeping with the *gorgeously* purposeful deterioration from [4:12-4:23], it sounds messy and even a little unpleasant.
The songwriting is admirable, certainly, and as a first step Verity Green should be particularly confident in her capabilities as a writer and performer. There is refinement to be made, but plenty of time to do it in. There is absolutely enough on show with 'My Mind At Night' to demonstrate Green as an artist talented enough to develop on from this initial offering.
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Thanks for reading! Slow Motion Panic Masters is a music, arts and culture blog created and edited by Ben Wheadon, a literature student and musician based in South Wales.