It’s hard to believe that a folk artist with so much mainstream success in the UK, like Gabrielle Aplin – who’s opened for the likes of big names such as Ed Sheeran and Bastille, is virtually unknown in the States.

This is a common theme between these two entertainment communities – however, most UK artists, with time, make their way over to the US and gain extreme amounts of exposure.

When i saw Gabrielle Aplin at the Webster Underground last year, there were maybe 200 people in the room. All, undoubtedly, for the most part under 21. I sipped away at my overpriced heineken whilst mingling with her A&R reps from warner music, thinking to myself – how is this girl not big over here?

Her Fleetwood Mac cover collaboration with Bastille has almost 4 million plays on Soundcloud. She’s played sold out tours all over the world, including but not limited to, Japan.

Aplin’s story is a dream sequence, really – rural farm girl, from the outskirts of London, YouTube sensation gets discovered by industry professional before graduating high school. First show in London is played to 100 people. But honestly, once you hear the girl sing, you understand.

Gabrielle should be set apart from many female artists for a couple of reasons. The first being that she is exceptionally good at finger plucking an acoustic guitar. Though the new batch of songs has a more “in your face,” mentality and look – as seen in Aplin’s first single from the second album, “Light Up the Dark,” Aplin is seasoned in the ways of guitar and piano and you gotta love a girl who plays instruments.

A second reason – Aplin is also a huge fan of the classics – Joni, Nicks, and Dylan – and it shows in her lyrics. A true sign of an authentic songwriter is their appreciation for the path-pavers before them.

And a third – Aplin has the voice of an angel. Her pitch may be a bit lacking in the earlier EP’s (not released in the US until this past year), but it adds a homey character that cannot be faked. Aplin shows tremendous growth and progression with each release. Her arrangements are orchestral but minimal, effective yet subtle.

The old EP’s are something worth checking out. But the new single, “Light Up The Dark,”makes a whole new mark in pop territory. Aplin says goodbye to whispery, forgiving vocals and emerges as a truly matured, sultry, strong woman.

Drawing from sounds similar to Coldplay, Radiohead and arena rock similarities such as U2 and The Killers, Aplin’s new single enlightens a new age of her career – turning over a page, if you will – of an emerged, liberated vocalist, songwriter, and bandmate – she’s ready to thrive, and she’s not afraid to show it.

Good luck, Gabby! We’re excited to see what’s next.

Check out Gabrielle’s Soundcloud here


Article: Hillary Barleaux


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