Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Kate Nash

I'm still a subscriber to Rolling Stone thanks to a generous birthday gift from a friend, and in the most recent issue (with Maroon 5 on the cover) I stumbled over Kate Nash in the "Hit or Hype" blurb section. Somewhat needless to say, they declared Ms. Nash to be a hit. I was immediately drawn in by their concise description of Ms. Nash's songs as a hybrid of Regina Spektor's poppy-piano (Ms. Nash sites as a main influence) laced with Lily Allen's U.K. sass. Almost immediately had to check this out.

Aside: {Of late, I've been disappointed with Rolling Stone. They missed the boat on the burgeoning indie-rock scene and chose to stay rigid with main-stream music. I wasn't around when RS was beginning, but I always got the feeling they tried to be cutting-edge or cater to parts of musical fringes. Someone had a great idea to have new sections in RS that detailed underground or upcoming artists discovered via blogs or MySpace. Even now a lot of the time, I find myself saying "old news" when I come across this section with each issue. This isn't my only gripe with the current RS. Their album reviews consistently lack bite. The most concise way for me to put it is: Grow Some Balls. I seriously believe I could put out an album and get 3/5 stars. Just go back and try and find something with less than 2 stars. It has become very rare. Be daring. Say an album isn't worth finishing. Say an album has as much musical talent as a barking dog. Say an artist's new album isn't nearly as good as their previous effort. Whatever. Say certain albums aren't good. Plain and simple. Glad I got that out of my system.}

Kate Nash. Wow. I feel like I'm discovering Lily Allen again. This girl has it. She's cute. She's got a great voice and plays both keys and guitar. Pop sensibilities with a "indie" / unconventional edge. And she's snarky enough to be risqué yet maintains an endearing realness and likability about her.

Press has been fluttering around, but really came to a head in the U.K. when her single "Foundations" debuted at #2 on the U.K. charts. This caused quite a stir at the record company who pushed her debut album (Made of Bricks) release up 5 weeks to Aug. 6th and that debuted at #1. Yes you read that correctly, #1 on the U.K. charts. Just yesterday Geffen records announced they would release her Foundations EP on September 4th. Again, like Ms. Allen, her full-length debut won't see U.S. shelves till early 2008 for who knows why. Most certainly by then U.S. fans will know the songs by heart, and sing them back to Ms. Nash when she makes her way stateside in support of the release. The NY Times got in on the early buzz about Ms. Nash recently saying such things as, "she has a knack for songs that seem to have been written and recorded with a minimum of fuss, time or money. Accompanied by beats built around plinkety-plink piano or strummed guitar, she delivers singsong narration and sneakily infectious refrains." Perfect. Time to take a listen and hear what the fuss is all about. Enjoy.

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