If, like me, you found Adele’s new album to be tepid at best, perhaps it’s time for another iconic British singer to steal your heart. Let me introduce you to Laura Mvula, one of the most singular vocalists and composers of our current era. If you’re unfamiliar with her magnificence, please note that the classically-trained Mvula attended Birmingham Conservatoire prior to 2013’s dazzling breakout album Sing To The Moon, and read this profile I did nearly three years ago on her for more background.
Here though, I want to focus on the staying power of this return single, titled “Overcome.” It features her signature vocal layering, with the kind of harmonies that only someone with a such an extensive background in choir could dream up, but also incorporates traditional gospel and funk courtesy of none other than Nile Rodgers himself. The message here is a direct statement of encouragement and renewal that manages to float far above corniness, offering a welcome salve, especially in a week riddled by the death of several beloved figures.
The song was produced by Troy Miller who worked closely with Mark Ronson and the late Amy Winehouse, and the track debuted on Annie Mac’s Radio 1 show last night. Apparently, Mvula sent Rodgers the track to listen to as a peer and friend, but he was so inspired he asked to contribute his own offerings to it. There is an air of the spontaneous to it that is hard to come by these days. Listen to “Overcome” below and look for more news from Mvula’s camp soon.