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Raised only a few streets from the legendary Van Morrison (though admittedly several decades later), Elle Stevenson (formerly Laura) is finally receiving recognition in the Northern Irish music scene. Her 2004 EP “Down” and this year’s “Live at the Rotterdam” have already been heard on the airwaves of several local stations and, having recently won a showcase on the music investment website ‘Slicethepie.com’ which secured her £15,000 to record her long-awaited debut album, it looks like Elle is set to grace more than just the local scene with her talent.
At the centre of the music is her voice - fragile, ethereal, haunting - providing an apt vehicle for songs which betray a rare kind of honesty. Stevenson doesn't shy away from wearing her heart on her sleeve in her songwriting, something fans tell her they appreciate. At times, her songs are lyrically raw and yet, so carefully framed with those trademark cascading piano lines, the listener is drawn into a space where catharsis and redemption finally meet. Indeed, one can never be sure if this music will break your heart, or if it will heal it.
Stevenson has an impressive range of influences including the likes of Tracy Chapman, Sarah McLachlan, Patty Griffin, Suzanne Vega and Sheryl Crow, but comparisons reveal little about her unique direction. Live sets include impressively original interpretations of songs by artists she admires: Radiohead, Chris Isaak, Crowded House and Alana Myles, amongst several others. She has supported many artists of varying success on the Irish music scene (such as Juliet Turner), as well as those of international acclaim, such as guitar legends Rodrigo y Gabriela and soul diva, Beverley Knight.
This summer, Elle will continue to play local venues to her ever-widening fan base, while she hits the studio with local producer Mike Houston, whom she describes as “The Northern Irish music industry’s best kept secret…”, to finally get recording! While no date for release has been announced yet, we anticipate it won’t be too much longer before you’re hearing a lot, lot more from this talented lady…
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