Laura Mvula - The Dreaming Room album review: gorgeous soul hymns

The Dreaming Room
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Artist: Laura Mvula
Genre: R&B / Soul
Label: RCA

Laura Mvula has suffered from crippling stage fright, panic attacks and monophobia (fear of being on your own), but she has filtered and processed interior anguish to the point where she can deliver music of substance, quality and style.

The Dreaming Room is full of such material. Couched in flavours that reference soul, funk, classical, the more sophisticated side of jazz and spoken word (collaborators include Nile Rodgers, London Symphony Orchestra, John Scofield; Maya Angelou is a narrative presence throughout), Mvula pulls one surprise after another out of the bag.

Her music has been described as “gospel-delia”, and that’s exactly what you get: gorgeous soul hymns as if sung in under-ether dreamtime.

Tony Clayton-Lea

Tony Clayton-Lea

Tony Clayton-Lea is a contributor to The Irish Times specialising in popular culture