Up-and-coming Welsh Pop-Folk artist Danielle Lewis has just released her latest 6 track EP Fly. With her earlier efforts Lewis has been compared to the likes of Joni Mitchell and Lucy Rose and while Fly has these elements, it has some new ones too. On a number of the tracks she tests the bounds of her voice to good effect. Her voice is exceptionally clean and clear making her lyrics easy to comprehend and if I had to make comparisons I would say that her vocals occasionally sound like Ingrid Michaelson or Gabrielle Aplin. Her material is all sentimental and for the most part quite slow paced and chilled outing while the folk roots are in there, I would say this is more of a pop record than the former (with the exception of Hiraeth) which I suspect will make it more palatable to the wider market.
This is certainly true of the opening trio of tracks are of the slow variety and speak of relationships and her Welsh Coast roots. Of these 3, Fly stands out the most with more interesting ebbing and flowing vocals bringing in more of the folk roots than the preceding tracks. Lewis cites this as being written to test the limits of her vocals and it certainly takes her into bolder territory becoming almost operatic in part. Belong follows this and as a more upbeat poppy number than the previous tracks it also stands out. Some of the vocal arrangements on this track are those which drew me to the Ingrid Michaelson comparison (I drew similarities to Be OK). Anywhere is Home follows suit and shows another quality to her voice and again, the vocal arrangements (rather than the tone) on this number drew comparison to Gabrielle Aplin’s work.
The EP closes with the (predominantly) a cappella Hiraeth. Sung in Lewis’ native Welsh tongue it is the most Folk track on the EP, it is beautifully sung. There is something about Celtic tongues that always gets me and this is no exception, with the first half of the song being solely Lewis’ vocal before a simple guitar arrangement joins the mix to compliment it.
If this EP is anything to go by, Lewis certainly has a lot of potential and I hope to see that unfurl in the coming years.