At the start of every year, like some sort of communally agreed trick of sod's law, we get to hear an album released late the previous year that threatens to knock us clean away. This year the honour went to Jesca Hoop, a California raised, now Manchester based singer-songwriter who, as every piece of biographical detail strives to mention so we might as well join in, used to be live-in nanny for Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan's kids. You might have first stumbled across her, as we did, supporting Elbow on their autumn 2008 tour, but it's with December's Hunting My Dress that she really came of age, striking a glorious midway meeting stop between English folk influence, New Weird freak-folk and Cat Power-ish mystical songwriting. If anyone sounds like the spiritual heir to Kate Bush's pagan poetry it's clearly not going to be Little Boots, it's Hoop. That in mind, here's some questions for her.
First single bought: Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana
First gig voluntarily attended: Victim's Family at the Phoenix Theatre in my home town
The record that most made you want to get into music: I was always into music but the first record I fell in love with was Rubber Soul by the Beatles
The three headliners at a festival you were curating: Crosby Stills & Nash in the 60's, the Clash, David Bowie in the 70's
A song not enough people know about but everyone should hear: Night Game by Paul Simon
A song you'd play to get people dancing: Paper Planes by M.I.A.
The last great thing you heard: Freestyle Fellowship
Your key non-musical influences: Conversation....voyeurism
Your favourite new artist: Bon Iver
New single Feast Of The Heart: