Kathryn Williams has long been one of Britain’s most under-rated talents. Despite a Mercury nomination for the fragile beauty of Little Black Numbers, she hasn’t really broken through to the mainstream in the course of her eight albums. The Pond sees her collaborating with Fairground Attraction’s Simon Edwards and Ginny Clee and reaching for a new sonic palette.
The Pond represents an interesting change of pace for Williams, moving away from her laid back folky roots into a more experimental place. There’s a real mish-mash of styles, albeit always with folk underpinnings. 'Bebop' has a rap, 'The River' has an almost bhangra feel, and the woozy 'Evening Star' comes complete with skittering beats and synthy bleeps and bloops. The star of the show remains Kathryn’s whispery vocal style, but it’s nice to hear her exploring such diverse instrumentation, and she deserves to see the resulting dreamy, adventurous record reward her with some new fans.