Lia Ices is my newest female vocalist crush. And it has nothing to do with looks, though she is quite pretty, it really is all about the voice. Ices is signed to the Jagjaguwar label and has recorded two albums. Her newest, Grown Unknown, was released in January and hasn’t received as much acclamation as it deserves. It is a fantastic album that is slightly folk, slightly alternative and has a very natural feel to it. At this time it works best in the morning or a bit later at night.
Most vocalists distinguish themselves from the pack by how distinct their vocal style is, I find this even more so with female vocalists. Lia Ices doesn’t have such a distinct sound such as Joanna Newsom or Bjork, but she falls in with Bat for Lashes, Tori Amos, Cat Power, with the similarities being closer to the former. Take a listen below to the lead off track ‘Love is Won’, it really got stuck in my head after a few listens. It begins with Ices softly singing over a piano backdrop, a slow drum groove enters and we’re off. It really is the “ooh ooh” part that clinches it though, you’ll see what I mean.
Another song that really stands out is ‘Ice Wine’, a string heavy number that sounds like a journey through a forest as the reminders of winter start to disappear, with something waiting on the other side.
The first single ‘Daphne’ features Justin Vernon, of Bon Iver fame, on backup vocals. Just an excellent song:
For some reason I think I’ll be seeing her this summer at a festival, but I have no reasoning to back that up. She will be playing at Lollapalooza, but I’m hoping for somewhere closer. I guess I’m believing in the power of positive thought. Until then Grown Unknown will be among my top albums of the year so far, joining me on many adventures. You can pick her album up at good record stores everywhere or order directly from JagJaguwar