Album: Laura Marling, I Speak Because I Can (EMI)

The first album wascallow but brimming withobvious talent. Here's thespill-over. Splashy, gushy,slightly too much. Anacoustic record of ultrapoeticmythopoeia,arranged with a heftystylistic debt to the LAcanyons of 1972 butevincing real Englishness.There are only a coupleof duff songs here, whichis good going consideringthe riskiness and reach ofher writing. Marling isgenuinely original, and ina pop market saturatedwith singer-songwritingmediocrity, she is to betreasured. And nurtured.