Kathryn Williams: Leave To Remain

[6 September 2007]

By Jason MacNeil

British singer Kathyrn Williams sounds as if she falls somewhere between The Waifs, Bjork and two Kates—namely Ruby and Bush. Fragile and very, very soothing, Williams rarely misses the mark on these 10 songs beginning with the gorgeous “Blue Onto You” which has just the slightest traces of jazz to give it more depth and substance. This style continues just as strongly on “Let It Happen” which also has some comparisons and traits commonly found in the work of Nick Drake with its subtle orchestral touches. Williams is a fine talent judging by the delicate, lullaby-esque “Stevie” that seems to hit all the right spots at exactly the right time. Although it is extremely difficult to pick just one highlight, perhaps Williams is at the height of her game during the lovely “When” that has a melancholic hue to it. Yet she never wastes a moment to show you how damn good this record is, whether on the piano-led “Glass Bottom Boat” that has a sparse arrangement and talks briefly about “f—king all afternoon” or the roots-y “Hollow”. And rather then settling for a filler track to finish, Williams once again pulls another gem out of her repertoire with “Room in My Head”. An album that is extremely hard to get out of one’s head indeed.

Published at: http://www.popmatters.com/pm/review/kathryn-williams-leave-to-remain/