- 01 Jul 20
Her set was intimate and raw, a beautiful exploration of her introspective songwriting and ethereal voice.
Maria Kelly’s stripped-down acoustic set allowed her impressive voice to shine. As she performed a mix of covers and original songs and debuted her new work on on the Hot Press Lockdown Sessions Y&E series, supported by the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, she set herself apart as one of the most impressive alt-folk artists to come out of Ireland.
Kelly opened with a stripped-down over of The Weepies’ ‘World Spins Madly On’, turning the already-intimate song into something even more beautiful, her beautiful voice and simple acoustic guitar warming the room instantly. As she dove into her set, she got lost in the ethereal, moving sounds of her heartbreakingly beautiful music.
Her performance of ‘june’, which has racked up an impressive million streams on Spotify, stripped down the already-soft song, allowing the longing nature of the song to take on an even more palpable sense of introspection. Her songs explore the anxieties of life, with nowhere to hide as she bares her soul with a voice ridden with emotion.
Kelly has spent her time in lockdown working on new music, which she debuted during her sett. The first new track she played was called ‘Supermarket’, exploring the intricacies of an imaginary breakup taking place in a supermarket. The reality of the scenario isn’t what was most important, rather her ability to tell a story that feels incredibly raw and real. She changed the tone a bit with a “sad, but upbeat” new track called ‘Martha’ about friendship and being lost in her mid-20s. Hearing a combination of her well-loved tracks like ‘i leave early’ and ‘Stitches’, every song took on a life of its own as she became engulfed in soothing sounds and introspection.
Maria Kelly has the amazing ability to turn a simple set with nothing but an acoustic guitar into something immensely captivating. Her talent is absolutely remarkable, a tour de force of introspective alt-folk.
Revisit her set below.