Lianne La Havas
It’s perhaps fitting that the opening track on Lianne La Havas‘ sophomore album is called “Unstoppable.” The twenty-five-year-old British singer-songwriter sensation is already beloved by Alicia Keys and Prince. Stardom seems her destiny. Her latest LP is titled Blood, and she’s apparently willing to spill a bit of it for her art—as evidenced by her devastatingly feverish performances on stunners like “Grow” and “Never Get Enough.” What cannot be emphasized enough is the natural grace and elegance of her singing, especially in stark contrast to the insufferable over-modulating of so many nu-gen R&B vocalists. And you’re just as likely to hear echoes of Joni Mitchell and Massive Attack as Jill Scott or Nina Simone in her style. Production-wise, there’s no mistaking the Britishness of Blood. Legendary producer Paul Epworth has worked with FKA twigs and Adele, and there’s a subtlety to his touch on Blood that allows La Havas’ stylistic fancies and inimitable pipes to truly shine through.