Welsh singer-songwriter Catherine Anne Davies is perhaps better known as The Anchoress who is a multi-instrumentalist, song-writer and author. Her music has is a mix of powerful alternative pop with some progressive rock thrown in for good measure. I can see the similarities with her and Florence Welch maybe it is just a personal thing yet to be honest I do not think it really matters who she has a similar sound to as her music is great as it and we should not have to draw comparisons to artists that may have a similar sound or look.
Her debut album Confessions of a Romance Novelist was released in 2016 and the album righty received a string of plaudits including best newcomer at the prog awards as well as being named in the guardian critics’ album of the year.
The album includes the song What Goes Around, which is one of my favorite songs in recent years by any artist, as I love the upbeat sound which works well with the lyrics and could be interpreted as a song about revenge. What I took from this song was a message that you may have hurt me but I’ll have the last laugh because everything goes back around.
Not only is The Anchoress a successful musician/songwriter, she is also a published author with the book Whitman’s Queer Children as well as having a PhD in literature and queer theory. She is a real all round talent and creative force.
I first heard of her when she performed the song little baby nothing with the Manic Street Preachers at the Q Awards in 2017 and I will be honest, I did not really know much about her music before then. Yet after hearing her perform with them I was blown away, as her talent shines through in every performance.
Like me she is a Manic Street Preachers fan and when I was creating the fanzine about the album Everything Must Go, I knew I wanted her contribution. As she got what the band was all about and she did a really good piece, for which everyone creating the fanzine was grateful for. She has dueted with them on Dylan and Caitlin from their latest album Resistance is Futile and I hope she works with the band again as she has brought something different to them when she collaborates with them.
As well as performing with the Manics she has performed with Simple Minds as she had previously meet Jim Kerr on The Dark Flowers project before joining up with them on tour. Providing additional keyboards and guitars.
The Anchoress is proof you can be a female in the music industry and do it on your terms. Like the influences that come through in her music such as Kate Bush, she will do it on her terms which is refreshing to see as you can get fed up with the music industry selling an image of how, not just women in music but women in general should be and as one of the songs from the album says P.S Fuck You could be seen as the perfect way of saying I will do it my way, thanks very much.
Catherine Anne Davies is a talented musician/songwriter who is a joy to listen to and I look forward to hearing her new album which is due for release later this year. If you have not yet heard of The Anchoress do yourself a favour and have a listen, you won’t regret it.
The Anchoress’ debut album Confessions of a Romance Novelist can be purchased here.
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