Despite being on 17 years old, Colchester-native Gen Irving demonstrates a natural music talent surpassing lots of ‘big name’ artists. After self-producing her debut EP in 2018 – Said Songs And Sunsets – Irving shows skills in production alongside her musical abilities. A multi-instrumentalist, this young lady plays all the instruments (other than drums) on her more recent releases. Her second single of 2020, ‘Said It Yourself’ is a well-balanced tune showing perfect harmonising of vocals with instruments.
Influenced greatly by folk-rock singers from the 70s and 80s, Irving’s sound is reminiscent of Joni Mitchell, Carol King and Bread. As with all of her music, ‘Said It Yourself’ is a simple track with basic instrumentation. Irving’s haunting vocals blend well with the guitar, drums and bass. Not only is it the unique sound, but the lyrics make ‘Said It Yourself’ an emotional rollercoaster. Irving described the track as “being at a party when an unexplainable sadness develops and envelopes and it’s never enough.”
What I find incredibly intriguing about Gen’s music is her distinctive alto – rich and penetrating (in a good way). The peculiar vocals with a steady melody place this teenager on another level. It’s not long before Gen Irving will be mentioned in the same breath as Janis Ian, Carol King and Annie Lennox.