Thursday, 27 November 2014
#7: Kate Tempest - Everybody Down
Did you see Kate Tempest at the Mercury Prize ceremony? Jon Snow was visibly besotted. He wants to know what she's doing next: a novel? Yes, of course, she's already writing a novel, based on the characters in Everybody Down. What's impressive is that none of this seems unlikely. Listening to the prodigal poet's debut album is a revelatory experience, in which all facile comparisons fall short. The Streets? Please. This is character-based storytelling on a level that hasn't been seen in music since White Light, White Heat, and even then, the blow-by-blow accounts of a generation brought up on Primark and WKDs are barely comparable. The fact is that Kate Tempest is a ridiculous talent, not just in storytelling, but in matching those narratives up to meter and rhythm. She's a rapper and a poet, and if there's a young ginger kid in Britain setting hearts alight, Ed Sheeran is well overdue to be laughed off the stage.