1. Blatant Lauren Ann 3:54

Lauren Ann has today released her new single titled ‘Blatant’. That smooth, almost jam-band feeling is evident and appealing from that first note, but combined with Lauren’s rock-esque styled vocals and the songwriting and you have a possible future classic. And that future is bright and wide once you listen to ‘Blatant’. Think Wednesday night at a bar where a band is getting their unofficial audition to play the stage and you think ‘oh wow’ as this song progresses from the P.A.. That moment where you wonder if they can come back this weekend and pray that this isn’t their only original song.

Take from that first paragraph what you will, but Lauren is one of those artists you can’t help but research on Spotify once you hear ‘Blatant’.

About Lauren Ann

For most musicians lockdown has been hell. But for Northern Irish newcomer Lauren Ann it’s been a blessing in disguise that has changed the direction of her life.

The 18-year-old always had a passion for music, her father’s love of classic rock being the impetus that inspired her love for Pixies, Nirvana, Suede and Muse. And she has been a budding musician ever since she hit her teens, when she traded violin lessons for her first sessions on guitar. Then when COVID hit, her family decided to shield to protect her vulnerable father.

“I didn’t have much else to do, so I started writing songs,” she recalls. “I was hiding them from my parents because I didn’t want them to know. But then I wrote ‘Don’t Take It Out On Me’ and I was really proud of it. So I showed it to them, and everything started from there.”

With a fiery mix of grunge dynamics, garage rock exuberance and a hooky pop edge, ‘Don’t Take It Out On Me’ feels like a natural hybrid between grunge’s original wave of killer bands, but with a flavour of contemporary practitioners such as Sir Chloe, The Regrettes and Milk Teeth. It’s an even more remarkable introduction when you consider that Lauren Ann recorded it at home on GarageBand, recording vocals, guitar and bass herself and adding programmed drums.

Her second single ‘How It Works’ proved that her debut was no fluke, something that was underlined with ‘Angel Eyes’. The size of the reaction grew in tandem with her confidence. Seeing her school friends share the QR code for ‘Don’t Take It Out On Me’ was a boost, but things kept scaling up. Her first release of 2021, ‘Angel Eyes’, was chosen as BBC Radio Ulster / ATL Introducing favourite track of the month, while the first seeds of critical acclaim came when the new music bible Nialler9 included her in their list of the best new Irish artists.

A key component of her rise was working with producer Declan Legge (Jealous of the Birds, Ciaran Lavery), which helped shape her raw songwriting talent into fully realised productions. By the summer of 2021, music was clearly Lauren Ann’s destiny. She put plans to study law on pause, and signed to Dublin label Faction (James Vincent McMorrow, All Tvvins) on the same day that she left school. It’s a phenomenal achievement for someone who only started writing songs a year before.

That deal starts with single ‘Lucy’, which reaches new heights in every aspect – from the wider range and deeper emotion of Lauren Ann’s vocal to the gnarly rush of the guitars and a stripped-back breakdown. With performances at Ireland Music Week 2021, and high profile support slots with New Dad and upcoming ones with SPRINTS, Lauren Ann has truly been establishing herself as one Ireland’s most exciting new talents.

New track ‘Blatant’, sees Lauren Ann continue on a similar trajectory, exposing the depth of her song writing and the true grit of her musical prowess.

“‘Blatant’ is about a blunt end to a relationship that you cared about,” she explains. “It’s about being let down by someone you didn’t think (or rather didn’t want to believe) could hurt you. It’s about being left out in the cold, yet you still care for them even though they don’t care for you anymore.”

Her own experiences are the launchpad for her imagination to take those stories into bigger directions. It’s also about staying true to who she is. “My songs are centred around heartbreak and anger. I didn’t want to write love songs as it’s not who I am. So I ended up doing break-up songs instead.”

Having already earned praise from artists including Sir Chloe and Starcrawler, Lauren Ann’s upwards trajectory continues in the coming months with a set at the Stendhal Festival and the release of her debut EP. Between her limitless potential and people like Olivia Rodrigo reintroducing guitar to the mainstream, Lauren Ann’s talent can take her to the top.

“Back at school, most people didn’t understand or like this music. I remember on non-uniform day, I’d turn up in grunge clothing and loads of dark make-up, and people would be like, ‘What’s she doing?’ But I liked it, so I did it. But it’s becoming a lot more popular. Now I want to play music for a bunch of people and become the best I can be.”