|Fast Food [2 CD, Rough Trade Edition]|
Nadine Shah — Fast Food [2 CD, Rough Trade Edition] •ζ Jaký je hlas Nadine? Dramatický, divadelní a bohatý — a na novém dvojalbualbu, Fast Food, myslím — udělala ze mne ventilátor. Black Celebration. Searching for the light. The oppressive joy of desperation. NADINE SHAH’s second LP ‘Fast Food’ is a bittersweet celebration of life’s dark and desperate aspects, but one that strangely fills you with joy. Evocative, North Sea–inspired, Nick Cave–meets–PJ Harvey–induced midnight indie torch songs from this U.K. singer/songwriter.
•ζ Nadine Shah released her debut album Love Your Dum and Mad to critical acclaim in 2013. A stint on the road with Depeche Mode followed and opening for Bat for Lashes provided notable highlights on an extensive tour. Created with trusted collaborator and producer Ben Hillier the excellent follow–up Fast Food is here. Born from a fervid 2 month writing session, Fast Food exists on a knife–edge every bit as dramatic as we've come to expect from Nadine but with a sharpened eye for all things hook laden. Recorded live at Bens studio The Pool the albums jagged nature is owed in part to the contributions of guitarist Nick Webb and bassist Pete Jobson (I Am Kloot). Building on the bruised honesty and charm of its predecessor, Fast Food rings with the confidence of an artist completing their most coherent musical chapter to date. The last album took so long to make that by the time it came out it didn’t feel like it was a very clear representation of where I was musically, but this time it’s different, Nadine explains. Fast Food is a more concentrated effort: it is the sound of Nadine as she is now — stepping out from behind the piano and growing with immeasurable confidence. “It is a reflection upon a world obsessed with instant gratification and a life full of complicated relationships. It’s the sudden realisation that you’re never going to be anybody’s first love ever again”.
Location: Pakistani and Norwegian parentage ~~ Whitburn, South Tyneside, UK
Album release: April 6th, 2015
Record Label: Apollo
01 Fast Food 3:54
02 Fool 4:42
03 Matador 3:53
04 Divided 4:47
05 Nothing Else to Do 4:55
06 Stealing Cars 4:04
07 Washed Up 3:06
08 The Gin One 3:11
09 Big Hands 3:48
10 Living 4:43
01 Jolly Sailor 4:59
02 Never Enough 3:26
03 Scoring Points 3:46
04 Rucksack 5:23
℗ 2015 Apollo Records
•ζ All tracks written by Ben Hillier / Nadine Shah
•ζ Ben Hillier Composer, Producer
•ζ Nadine Shah Composer, Primary Artist
•ζ Dm Smith Collage, Layout
•ζ Drew Smith Engineer
•ζ Bunt Stafford–Clark Mastering
•ζ Simon Webb Photography
Similar albums: PJ Harvey / John Parish — A Woman a Man Walked By, Richard Hawley — Lady’s Bridge, Diamanda Galás — Defixiones: Will and Testament, Orders from the Dead
•ζ Rough Trade Exclusive — 300 copies of the LP and CD come with a bonus 4 Track EP called 'Never Enough Roughs' with totally unreleased extra cuts. The inimitable Nadine Shah releases her second album, 'Fast Food' via Apollo Records. It's an intense, brooding and mournful album. If you thought debut album 'Love Your Dum and Mad' was dark — then 'Fast Food' pushes it to even darker places. The album was once again recorded at The Pool in London with Producer Ben Hillier, Peter Jobson (I am Kloot) on Bass and Nick Webb (guitar). Her gothic, jazz–influenced chamber pop is both lushly atmospheric and chillingly sparse, while the 27–year–old's pure, powerful vocals have drawn comparison to both a young PJ Harvey and time–ravaged Marianne Faithfull.
•ζ LP — Red Vinyl.
By PAUL BROWN, April 2nd, 2015; Score: 8
•ζ The recent spectacle of BBC 6Music Festival on Tyneside saw the most exciting collection of artists to converge on the North East of England in recent memory. The weekend was a triumph, with unforgettable sets from the likes of Sleater–Kinney, Django Django and Mogwai among the main highlights. As it turned out, though, the artist who really stole the show was someone from just down the coast in Whitburn who wasn’t even on the original line–up. Nadine Shah stepped in as a late replacement for an unwell Jon Hopkins and the magnificent performance in The Sage Hall 2 which saw her preview of second album Fast Food feel like a big deal, the coming of age of an artist who had been ‘one to watch’ for a number of years.
•ζ Of course, Shah’s impact on the festival shouldn’t really have been a terribly big surprise to anyone already familiar with the bewitching power of her songs. The poised delivery of her debut Love Your Dum and Mad in 2013 caught many off–guard, and hinted that we just might have a pretty special artist on our hands. Ever since then, she seems to have been constantly on the road honing her craft and growing the troupe of devotees she’s been quietly amassing like some kind of gothic Pied Piper.
•ζ One of the first things to strike you about Fast Food in comparison to her debut is that she seems to have developed a sense of focus which wasn’t always necessarily evident previously. There’s a deliciously gloomy cloud which enshrouds every song here and means that Fast Food is not only an impressively coherent record, but it’s also a thoroughly immersive experience. It’s very easy to be sucked into Nadine’s world by the dark, brooding tales she weaves here, even if the directness and intimacy of her words can make you feel just a little voyeuristic at times.
•ζ Much is made of the sheer power of Shah’s voice, but it’s also a hugely versatile tool which she employs here with a masterful restraint. There’s a lot to be said for the lightness of touch from producer Ben Hillier in facilitating this, freeing her to so effectively portray such a wide spectrum of emotions. Like Shah, he has a strong grasp of the power of simplicity and this makes for a number of Fast Food’s most powerful moments. ‘Divided’ for example, is one of the most affecting songs here, with the arrangement as naked as Shah’s delivery and lyrics: “My love, it was divided / Between his cheekbones and his knees… I let my hair loose for you / But I would scrape it back as soon as I would leave”.
•ζ Throughout Fast Food, there’s a strong sense of the songs having the space to breathe and develop at their own pace. ‘Big Hands’ and the hypnotically gorgeous ‘Nothing Else to Do’, for instance, both build from fragile origins to gently majestic finales. These moments are wonderful, but perhaps the greatest triumphs on this album are when Shah indulges her deceptively sharp pop nous. ‘Stealing Cars’, for example is full of hooks from the moment she opens her mouth. ‘Fool’, meanwhile is driven by irresistible shards of Interpol–esque guitar and casts Shah as the chief assailant in a deliciously spiteful (if tongue in cheek) taunting of a predictable, pretentious Cave and Kerouac obsessive. It’s a fantastic piece of work, and one of the strongest singles to have been released so far this year.
•ζ If Love Your Dum and Mad floated the idea that Nadine Shah was capable of greatness, then Fast Food confirms this as fact. The songs on this record have been delivered with the kind of aplomb that only someone with an unshakeable confidence in their work can muster, which suggests that Nadine Shah’s artistic future is mouthwatering. Perhaps that’s a discussion for another day though, and we should probably just savour what she’s doing right now. One thing’s sure, though, Nadine Shah is no longer ‘one to watch for the future’, but a bona fide creative force in the here and now. •ζ http://www.drownedinsound.com/
Review by David Jeffries; Score: ****
•ζ Hard to place yet so familiar, the twitchy, goth angst of Nadine Shah is generally described as PJ Harvey mixed with Nick Cave, but that ignores her sly wit, coming off as if Morrissey were crossed with an ice queen and Bauhaus played in support. All that said, she's a unique voice as well, coming out of Whitburn, South Tyneside and still a master of the rustic American twang, just updated with a more modern twitch and punch. This sophomore effort is a less grand and wonderfully reserved alternative to her debut album, 2013’s Love Your Dum and Mad. Here, short and passionate relationships are the thing, all of their agony and their ecstasy, and often in the same song. The aptly titled "Divided" steams up the windows with a sensual sway and its talk of perfect cheekbones, but there’s also a "hidden jealousy" and plenty of other bad stuff right below the surface. "Fool" is the same kind of passionate and damned material, but with more of a beat and a hook, while "Nothing Else to Do" ("but fall in love") is a surprise, coming off as drunken, cursed chamber music. The beautiful musical twisting during "Big Hands" proves Shah is more than just a wounded wordsmith, while producer and co–writer Ben Hiller returns to paint everything a Depeche Mode– or Elbow–styled shade of black. With dangerous come–ons like “Check your pulse when I speak,” the album’s shocking cover art is a suitable mix of beauty and blood, and even if the first cut is the deepest, second album Fast Food is still wicked sharp.
Artist Biography by James Christopher Monger
•ζ The alluring result of Pakistani and Norwegian parentage, Whitburn, South Tyneside–based singer/songwriter Nadine Shah possesses a voice, and more importantly a mystique, that has been oft–described as a blend between PJ Harvey and Nick Cave, but her brooding, intensely atmospheric blend of midnight loner pop and torchy, jazz–kissed indie rock owes a nod to fellow English insomniacs like Anna Calvi, Richard Hawley, and Antony Hegarty as well. Inspired by jazz and pop as a youth, as well the religious Sufi songs that her father brought into the home, Shah issued a series of evocative singles and a pair of EPs before releasing her debut long–player, 2013’s Love Your Dum and Mad, produced by Ben Hillier (Blur, The Horrors, Depeche Mode). •ζ http://www.allmusic.com/
Rough Trade: http://www.roughtrade.com/albums/90419
Norman Fleischer, April 6, 2015, NBHAP Rating: 4,3/5
|Fast Food [2 CD, Rough Trade Edition]|