If you go with the Dylan analogy, this very short clip must be the equivalent of the Dylan party tapes – not quite mature, raucous but entirely self-aware. You can see where she was going with this… this was 12 August 2008.
Here’s a version of “Flicker and Fail” from The Albert Hall on 7 July last year.
Some people don’t get on with this song because they think it’s too much like a Joni Mitchell song and right enough, it could have wandered off For The Roses or Court and Spark with its head held high.
Not the point.
My understanding is that this song was originally written by LM’s father, who is a big fan of Joni; she then re-worked it a little and it was issued with the download version of the Creature album, as a live recording from York Minster and most recentlyas a 7″ single last Record Store Day – so clearly she is happy with the song.
And it is a great song… but what every performance I’ve heard of this illustrates is what a great singer Laura Marling has become (“my heart, my burden…”) She truly has developed the poise, the swagger, the chutzpah of a jazz singer. The transcendence.
Happy Birthday to her for tomorrow.