NEWS: Kathryn Williams Anthology Release | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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It can be rare to come across an artist in the North East who engenders as much goodwill and respect as Kathryn Williams. The adopted Geordie (she’s originally from Liverpool) has been the subject of stratospheric praise during her career – her work has been described as “spellbinding” and “magical” by the likes of the Guardian and Clash, her voice as “one of the loveliest on Earth” according to Guy Garvey – yet she remains full of a self-effacing warmth and ready friendliness that might be missing in one concerned more with ego than with art.

This year sees the 20th anniversary of her debut album Dog Leap Stairs, famously recorded for a budget-friendly £80 in 1999 and released on her own CAW Records, which kick-started a career that has spanned genres and collaborators (most successfully with Neill MacColl on 2012’s album Two and on Ed Harcourt’s hauntingly sublime track, Parliament of Rooks). Whether she sets her mind to lush acoustic folk, jazz or electronic-influenced diversions, or writes with the ghost of Sylvia Plath looming large as inspiration (as on 2015’s arresting Hypoxia), she brings a fresh approach and an artist’s eye for detail to every new project she tackles.

The release of a beautiful twenty disc box set on 28th June will collate some of Kathryn’s astonishing back catalogue, alongside original drawings and paintings, a lyric book and essay book featuring introductions to her studio albums from 1999-2015. Certainly a must-have for any fan, the anthology serves as apt demonstration of a rare talent indeed.

Kathryn embarks on a UK tour later this year, taking in Sage Gateshead on Tuesday 17th September.

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