"Back home, time to reflect. We need less cars and more nature. We need eye contact. We need communal meals. We need love. We need the river. We need the soil."
Kristin McClement is a singer and a songwriter. She plays guitar and piano and is part of the Willkommen Collective, an independent music label based in Brighton, UK.
She is eternally grateful for the inspiration and support gathered from the musicians with whom she writes, records, plays live shows and drinks tea, including:
“Listening to McClement’s voice is like becoming hooked on a drug as it takes over the senses, changing your feelings and perceptions. It’s intoxicating.”
"Weighty pop music which dazzles, shimmers and glows exquisitely in the cold light of the day.”
“A debut album of gravitas and maturity which should secure her reputation as a songwriter and musician of depth and character.”
“The Wild Grips is an extraordinary collection of mournful yet beautifully crafted and poetic songs, with McClement’s deep resonant voice dominant throughout.”
Kristin McClement’s debut album The Wild Grips has been steadily gaining attention since its release in February 2015. She has performed both solo and with with collaborators Jools Owen, Emma Gatrill and Martha Rose across the UK and Europe alongside notable acts such as PJ Harvey, Benjamin Clementine, Sam Lee, Kathryn Joseph and The Weather Station. The 405 describe her as having “a particularly soulful voice; very low and sensual, it washes over you and insinuates itself into your brain without you even realising.”
Kristin spent her early years travelling the vast shapeshifting landscapes of South Africa, an experience that would leave a deep and lasting impression. Leaving Africa behind she moved to Kent, England aged thirteen where she picked up her first classical guitar and began to write songs. Whilst studying Fine Art in Brighton she caught the attention of the local folk scene. After a handful of early performances she was eagerly adopted into The Willkommen Collective whose many members can be heard on The Wild Grips.
Produced by Christian Hardy (The Leisure Society, Benedict Benjamin, Pop Crisis), The Wild Grips features the graceful tones of cellist Becca Mears (Peggy Sue, The Mariner’s Children, Eyes & No Eyes) and the sensitive patter of drummer Tom Heather (Rachael Dadd, Eyes & No Eyes). Mixed with an undercurrent of atmospheric piano and synth, the arrangements are delicately spun around Kristin’s earnest voice and guitar.
Alongside artists such as Nina Nastasia and Gillian Welch, Kristin is inspired by the songs of Nick Drake and Leonard Cohen. Her music reflects a mood of displacement, the feeling of being adrift in a complex world. But there is also a call for help and a reach for hope in the acceptance of our fragile nature. What ultimately holds her work together is its perspective – that nature is all powerful yet we will forever seek to defy it.
Kristin, with the help of her Willkommen friends, has been working on new material – etching away, discovering, distilling what the songs wish to be. Her second album is due for release soon.