Care of Semper Augustus Records, Lena Fayre released her EP on June 10.
What's the big deal? Well, here I am, barely having the time to "release" my résumé to employers, and at such a young age Lena has paved the way for the future of budding musicians. She has dared to dream and begin at a young age, and in my book that makes her a role model already.
In the aftermath of listening to her track list, I felt cheated. Why? Because I had no knowledge of her (other than her single "Belong to You"), therefore no platform to judge her by. So later, when I read that she was only 16 years old, I stopped in my tracks.
Is it possible for a girl so young to sound so wise? Evidently.
Watching The X Factor clips of Carly Rose Sonenclar, I noticed that the level of control exercised was similar to Miss Fayre's own, though their styles and ranges are entirely different. The cover art has her donning a hippie-esque headband, and her free-spiritedness is certainly captured throughout the songs. On first impression, her voice has influences ranging from Colbie Caillat to Katy Perry to Christina Perri. Even though she has similarities to those vocalists, her marketability comes from the fact that she's still fiercely different. As far as I can tell, if I can't find an artist like you, then you're on the right path. In her biography, featured on her website, her voice is described as "crystalline" with "precision" comparable to heavyweight Lauryn Hill. Those are some big shoes to fill.
OK, so now that you're familiar with who she is, what about the five song track list made me swoon for her? "Jukebox Love" is set to be released as the joyous headliner, and it's the most radio-friendly single of the bunch. It's got youthfulness but edge, and radiates confidence the singer has both in her ability to sing and her variability when she's singing. It's a wildly carefree single, whereas "Love Burning Alive" takes a dramatic, intimidating and pulsating turn, resembling the pace of a flickering flame. "Belong to You" features the singer's purity in emotion, and highlights her range and focus on inspired, sincere delivery. "Fate" shows the club scene appeal and potential for remixing with a tune reminiscent of Kylie Minogue's "Can't Get You Out Of My Head," and adds yet another commendable layer to this multi-dimensional artist. And I can assure you, Lena did save the best for last. "Silver" combines all her strengths: impassioned songwriting, genuine relatability, profound relevancy, mainstream appeal and soothing vocal control.
Lena Fayre isn't the kind of diamond in the rough you'd expect from a teen. She's already a polished gem. Take a listen to this album and comment below on where you think she stacks up. Readers, what type of artist is she? Is she pop? Is she indie? Is she urban? Or is she in a league of her own? Let me know your thoughts!
Her video for "Jukebox Love" was directed by the reputable Adam Blake Caver, and is set to premiere sometime in the near future — but in the meantime, listen to the track below!
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