I dunno whether it has a name as such, but there seems to be a whole folk-ish singer-songwriter-y 'scene' in London - basically artists like Lightspeed Champion, Laura Marling, Noah and the Whale, Emmy the Great, plus the ones who've really hit the mainstream Kate Nash and Adele.
I'm hardly new pointing it out - there's an amazing mixtape on Good Weather for Airstrikes, from back in October. Florence and the Machine are on it, and this Beirut cover has been doing the rounds recently:
MP3: Florence and the Machine - Postcards from Italy (highly recommended)
MP3: Beirut - Postcards from Italy (highly recommended - but you already have this anyway, right? Right?)
(from Gulag Orkestar)
I think she's really good at doing the wordless lilty bit that comes in about halfway through (at 1:35 to be precise), the way the last note in the first part of the phrase (at 1:38) is a lower one than in the original. Does that make sense?
My iTunes is ordered by 'Date Added', so that after 'Postcards from Italy' (added 26/03/2008 18:35) finishes, the next song that comes on (added on 26/03/2008 20:29), because I'd just been watching Arrested Development, is this:
MP3: Europe - The Final Countdown (if you do not own this you are a fool.)
I particularly love the way they repeat the word "Venus" in the second verse, and then he enunciates the end of the next line - "seen us" - really clearly so as to draw even more attention to the amazing rhyme.
So the sequence is Florence and the Machine's cover of 'Postcards from Italy', then 'The Final Countdown'. The next word to come out of my speakers is: "Twat". That'd be this song:
MP3: Ali Love - Who's That Twat? (it's not that great really, but worth listening to imho) (unreleased, here's his myspace)
Like I say, it's not really very good, and it sounds a little bit like Tubthumping by Chumbawumba, but it's so blatantly bitter at how the music industry has messed him around that it's worth a listen just to marvel at his anger, as well as to wonder why he uses lyrics that don't scan ("'stead of using it to make a twat of yours truly", with a stress on the the last syllable of 'truly'; and in the next line there's one too many syllables too...). OK I've gone all pedantic English student on your collective selves. Apologies.
To make up for it, here's the first song I heard from Lightspeed Champion (pictured right - photo by me :) ), waaaay back from February 2007, maybe even earlier. I don't think Dev likes it - I seem to remember he called it his attempt to write a power-ballad on his myspace. But it's really good, a pretty rough demo sure, and somehow the lyric "they make me blue" doesn't feel right, but still. I like the guitar break just over half-way through. Seriously, download it, it's pretty hard to find I think:
MP3: Lightspeed Champion - Shower Your Love On Me (highly recommended)
(unreleased, but buy the amazing Falling Off the Lavender Bridge)