Cold Specks is the stage name of 23-year-old Canadian-bred singer-songwriter Al Spx, but it's not as if "Al Spx" isn't a pseudonym itself; she created the moniker out of respect for her parents, who don't approve of her music career. The London-based singer started Cold Specks as a small acoustic project to showcase her soulful voice and thoughtful lyrics, but it's only grown from there.
When producer Jim Anderson heard her work, he approached Spx to collaborate and produce a full-length album. Anderson put a small band around her to help accentuate her poignant sound. Cold Specks' debut single, "Holland," was released last year to rave reviews, and earned her a high-profile label contract.
Earlier this year, Cold Specks released its debut album, I Predict a Graceful Expulsion. Though comparisons to other British soul singers — Adele, Amy Winehouse — are inevitable, the project is rooted in a much deeper, darker blues sound.
In this World Cafe interview, WXPN's David Dye talks to Spx about the challenges she faced recording her first album, overcoming stage fright and transitioning from a solo acoustic artist to leader of a six-piece band.