I was first introduced–sorry, introduuced to Indiana-born singer Natalie Walker back in 2006.
Formerly a member of the trip-hop troupe Daughter Darling, Walker debuted amongst a surge of fellow indie-pop songstresses that dominated the blogosphere (not to mention the soundtracks of nearly every trendy television show of the time, including Grey’s Anatomy, Ugly Betty and The OC)–songstresses like Imogen Heap, Rachael Yamagata and Bat For Lashes.
Her 2006 solo debut, Urban Angel was a stunning showcase of atmospheric electronica and wisps of airy, romantic vocals, resulting in several successful soundtrack inclusions as “Circles” (Grey’s Anatomy) and the gorgeously lush Thievery Corporation remix of “Quicksand” (Sophia Coppola‘s Marie Antoinette). Quite simply, I was smitten.
Two years later, Walker released her follow-up effort With You, an equally mesmerizing release that came packaged with the same ambient sounds and hushed vocals as her debut, but bolstered with some slightly bigger, pop-focused productions. Walker once again received the soundtrack treatment thereafter with the album’s soaring title track “With You” appearing on several shows, including The City and 90210.
Now, she returns for her third solo outing: Spark, due to be released on June 7 on Dorado Records.
“Uptight” is the lead single from Spark; an intimate offering that finds the singer’s gorgeous voice floating between a lonesome guitar strum, tripping electronica and the same nagging sense of wanderlust that colors all of Walker’s discography. “I don’t want to fight tonight / Come here, warm me up inside / It’s wrong, let me make it right,” Walker sings, her delicate vocals enveloped by warm waves of strings and slow-burning electronica embers.
On April 26, Walker will release the second single from Spark–“Cool Kids,” as well as two new mixes through Beatport: The Linus Loves mix and the Remix Artist Collective (RAC) mix. In addition, the singer is currently offering a free download of the gorgeous upcoming album track “Mars” on her official Facebook page, which is an absolute treat.
Natalie Walker is one of those rare artists that manages to strike the perfect balance between consistency and a gradual evolution in sound. And judging by what we’ve already heard, Walker’s latest may just be her finest moment yet.
Spark will be released on June 7. (iTunes)