From Stoke-On-Trent to Manchester may not be that far but when you factor in a spell in Kentucky during your formative years, your journey takes on a wholly different set of variables. Lissy Taylor may hail from The Potteries but her influences are definitely more Country & Western than Doulton and Wedgewood. Although Lissy retains the elegance and refinement associated with the fine china that S-O-T is synonymous with, her musical direction is becoming ever more considered and provocative as she finds her own sound.
Just as Sylvia Plath recognised that "Nature... birds, bees, spring, fall; all of those subjects that are absolute gifts to the person who doesn't have any interior experiences" during their youth give way to far more "personal emotional experience" so it is that Lissy Taylor's musical evolution from a young singer-songwriter, full of charm and blessed with a stunning vocal, is now able to blend that with real life. At the ripe old age of nineteen Lissy has already played numerous festivals, support slots and headline gigs as she builds her audience and grows in confidence. Now, it would seem, is her time to take it to the next level, to raise her public profile and to make a breakthrough.
The beginning of 2020 sees Lissy release her latest single and video for her song, 'Mayday'. As the drums and revolving guitar give way to Lissy's sultry, softly soulful vocal there is a hint of Broken Bells (Never a bad thing) about the hypnotic melody. The pairing of the Country hued soundtrack to Taylor's seductive harmonies makes the song hard to resist. When the high notes of the hook laden chorus kick in there is no turning back. Lissy's youthful vulnerability is brought to the fore brilliantly as she expresses her near exasperation: "People breaking up my mind like it's a puzzle, God Knows I struggle", she sings. Her emotive delivery and impassioned performance point to an artist displaying a maturity and understanding way beyond her years.
Lissy Taylor's 'Mayday' might be born out of distress, despair and some despondency but it rails against the negativity of bad relationships. Taylor captures her torment and vocalises it quite brilliantly. Her voice effortlessly flits between torch singer and soul siren on her latest release, an irresistible mix that only leaves you wanting more.
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This article is dedicated to Caroline Flack.
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