Laura Marling
Amsterdam Paradiso, The Netherlands
18th March 2012 (2012-03-18)


Type: Audience master, recorded from 4 metres in front of the left PA stack.
Source: 2 x matched DPA 4060 mics ->
DPA MMA6000 amplifier (100 Hz low-cut filter) ->
Edirol R-09HR recorder (44.1 kHz/16 bit WAV)
Lineage: Audacity 1.3.14-beta (tracks split, fades added) ->
FLAC (compression level 8) [libFLAC 1.2.1 20070917]


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01. I Was Just A Card
02. The Muse
03. Don't Ask Me Why
04. Salinas
05. Blackberry Stone
06. Ghosts
07. Alas I Cannot Swim
08. Dance, Dance, Dance
09. My Manic And I
10. [unknown]
11. Goodbye England (Covered In Snow)
12. [banter]
13. Night After Night
14. [band introduction/banter]
15. Alpha Shallows
16. Sophia
17. Rambling Man
18. [banter]
19. I Speak Because I Can

Running time: 74m 00s


Let's see if I can break with music journalism tradition and review Laura
Marling without referring to her youthfulness. Whoops! That was a close call.
I nearly blew it before I'd even got started.

It's only the second paragraph and I've probably still got your attention, so
I'll take the liberty of mentioning that support this evening came from Pete
Roe, who just happens to double as Laura's guitarist.

Pete is a major talent in his own right. His guitar skills are a pleasure to
behold, but he composes, sings and plays piano, too. For this support set,
however, he sticks with the strings.

Pete's a mainstay of the London folk scene, but much less known beyond that
sphere. I'm going to do my paltry bit to change that and say that, if you like
Laura Marling and intend to avail yourself of this recording, you owe it to
yourself to complete the evening and pick up Pete Roe, too, whose set will
follow in the next day or two.

Laura's bang on time at half eight. The Paradiso is packed and looks sold-out
to me, but there had been tickets still available earlier in the day when I
checked, so if it's not sold-out now, it must be within a football team or
thereabouts of doing so.

It's an inauspicious start. By the time Laura has donned her guitar, her band
are already through the intro to 'I Was Just A Card' and she discovers that
her guitar is out of tune.

There's no time to recover, so she's forced to retune audibly, mid-song, but
she tosses the audience a flash of that coy smile of hers and enchants all
those present into instant forgiveness. Instead of remaining an off-putting
glitch, the moment is effortlessly charmed by Laura to become one of those
signature instants that lend a occasion character by virtue of their

The end of 'Alas I Cannot Swim' signals the start of the solo Laura segment of
the show.

She kicks off this mini-set with a cover of Neil Young's 'Dance, Dance,
Dance', apologising afterwards to any fans of Neil in the audience. No apology
needed, as far as I'm concerned.

This part of the evening also brings forth a brand new song, which I have
struggled, but failed to match with a name. It appears to be very new, indeed,
and the latest in a line of new songs that Laura has been playing since the
release of 'A Creature I Don't Know' last year. I've heard four or five of
these new songs and this one, in my opinion, is the best of the bunch. The
next album should be a real treat if this is anything to go by.

When Laura's band fail to reemerge on cue after the fourth solo song, there's
some awkward humming and haing before Laura decides to pull a fifth one out of
the bag, treating us to an unscheduled 'Night After Night'. What Laura giveth,
however, Laura also taketh away, so we lose 'My Friends' from the set, which
should have been played after 'Alpha Shallows'.

Laura has taken an innovative approach to introducing the band on this tour.
She makes each of them speak to the audience and tell an anecdote or joke.
This evening, we hear how a couple of the band went to the Van Gogh Museum for
some culture, whilst another band member spent the afternoon in the pub.

Laura informs us that she had given her band the assignment this evening of
producing a work of modern art from the backstage fruit, so the band now
present their creations to the audience. It's a shame that I have no photos to
accompany this moment. It's amazing what you can do with a bowl of fruit and
some cocktail sticks.

We speed on to the end of the set, which comes at a remarkably early 21:45.
Laura warns us ahead of time that she is reappropriating the true meaning of
the word 'encore', which, of course, indicates that there won't be one.

We'll be another 15 minutes at least getting out of here and I stop to pick up
Pete Roe's new EP on the way out, but it's still an early finish by anyone's

The sound of the recording is excellent and the only distraction is the
occasional plastic beer glass getting kicked, but that's par for the course at
any standing gig. The sound in the Paradiso can occasionally be muddy, but
that wasn't an issue this evening. No fan of Laura Marling's music will regret
downloading this recording.

For anyone left wanting more of the same, my recording of Laura from last
November at the Crossing Border festival in The Hague is still hanging from
the tracker by a silk thread: