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Alternative & Indie - Released June 26, 2020 | Infectious Music

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In 2017, Holiday Destination brought Nadine Shah out from the underground, revealing an intriguing love child of PJ Harvey and Siouxsie and Anna Calvi. With that third album, the Londoner who was born to a Norwegian mother and a Pakistani father tightened the bolts of an indie rock that she delivered in a rather tense, borderline post-punk way, with angular basses, nervous but minimalist guitars and an almost free saxophone. Three years later, Shah has made her sound even more original with her heavy influences, notably thanks to her unique voice which has become deeper and deeper, hitting you from the very first minutes of Club Cougar, the brilliant opening track that sets the tone for the record. Even in her lyrics, the British singer stands out from her peers in her scathing introspection of the 30-year-old woman that she is, mocking societal pressures and sexism. Like on Ladies for Babies (Goats for Love) where she openly responds to the 90s Ace of Base hit, All That She Wants. Kitchen Sink is also more daring than its predecessors in its instrumental choices, less rock'n'roll and more atypical, especially in its impressive use of percussion which really spices up this beautiful album. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released August 25, 2017 | 1965 Records Limited

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Born to a Pakistani father and a Norwegian mother, Nadine Shah is, in a way, the daughter of PJ Harvey’s revenge and Siouxsie. An interesting kinship, confirmed on Holiday Destination. In her third album, the Londoner tightens the bolt of her music that she delivers in a very tense, nearly post-punk manner with an angular bass line, nervous albeit minimalistic guitars, and an almost free-playing saxophone. An urgency undoubtedly dictated by the themes covered, such as migration issues (PJ Harvey had also touched on a similar issue in The Hope Six Demolition Project…), that makes Holiday Destination even stronger and more powerful. © MD/Qobuz
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Pop - Released April 6, 2015 | Apollo

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. © David Jeffries /TiVo
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Pop - Released July 21, 2013 | Apollo

4 stars out of 5 -- "[A] piercingly direct seduction of the senses." © TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released February 3, 2020 | Infectious Music

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Alternative & Indie - Released June 23, 2020 | Infectious Music

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Alternative & Indie - Released June 26, 2020 | Infectious Music

The fourth long-player from the spell-casting English singer/songwriter, Kitchen Sink is aptly named, as Nadine Shah and longtime collaborator/producer Ben Hillier have crafted a wily and inventive collection of songs that pair astute social commentary with crisp, cosmopolitan arrangements drawing from a deep and intuitive arsenal of styles. The follow-up to Shah's Mercury Prize-nominated Holiday Destination, the 11-track set commences with the airy and funky "Club Cougar." Like its predecessor, the scathing "Ladies for Babies (Goats for Love)" is awash in wiggly beats, staccato horns, and flourishes of Tropicalia, with Shah's evocative lyrics and stately, confidant voice wryly and vividly parsing the relationship between sexism and fertility. Exploring the notion of what it means to be both a woman in your thirties and an outsider (Shah was born of Pakistani and Norwegian parentage), the sinewy title track's clanging guitars and strident piano mirror the narrator's insistence on combating cognitive bias with confidence -- it's a strut, not a sprint. There are echoes of Shah's bluesy, noir-pop past peppered throughout Kitchen Sink, most notably on the cinematic "Kite" and the sumptuous closer "Prayer Mat," but the overall vibe is as playful as it is rooted in emotional and societal discord. Like her sonic contemporaries PJ Harvey, Cate Le Bon, and Fiona Apple, Shah presents as a mystery wrapped in an enigma, when in reality she's just innately talented and resolute in her convictions. Unsurprisingly, the mesmerizing Kitchen Sink distills those two predilections into something that's both compelling and otherworldly. © James Christopher Monger /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released March 25, 2020 | Infectious Music

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Alternative & Indie - Released April 20, 2020 | Infectious Music

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Alternative & Indie - Released May 13, 2020 | Infectious Music

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Pop - Released March 17, 2014 | Apollo

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Alternative & Indie - Released August 9, 2017 | 1965 Records Limited

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Alternative & Indie - Released April 14, 2013 | Apollo

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Pop - Released July 7, 2013 | Apollo

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Pop - Released September 16, 2013 | Apollo

"A smouldering, heartbreaking tale of adultery and emotional peril." © TiVo
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Electronic/Dance - Released November 24, 2013 | Apollo

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Alternative & Indie - Released November 18, 2014 | Apollo

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Alternative & Indie - Released July 13, 2017 | 1965 Records Limited

Holiday Destination is Nadine Shah's third record, and it's the one that sees her emerge from the ubiquitous PJ Harvey and Nick Cave comparisons most fully. Certainly, as far as Harvey and Shah's music is compared, there are certain aesthetic and thematic crossovers, but the latter's political concerns feel acutely direct and personal compared to the more conceptual nature of Harvey's later work. With this latest record she tackles big and troubling issues apparent both in her native U.K. and around the world, yet those heavy themes are consistently met with a playful, limber, and imaginative musicality. Opener "A Place Like This" pairs funk rhythms with pro-refugee protest chants, and "2016" speaks of "Fascists in the Whitehouse" among nimble guitar riffs and a crisp, disjointed beat. The bracing lead single "Out the Way" is a frank cautionary tale about the rise of nationalism and the treatment of second generation immigrants -- "Where would you have me go?/I'm second generation/Don't you know?" -- and its jittery, marching rhythm, vibrating guitar, and lunging sax feed into the urgency and importance of the narrative. The title track was inspired by news footage of holiday makers in Greece complaining of the refugee crisis' effect on their break, and still its danceability doesn't detract from the troubling lyrical content, which warns, "Fatalities in the water/traffic jam by your side/feed your son, feed your daughter/how you gonna sleep tonight?/the bad guys they are winning." Unlike her previous records, which were recorded live, Shah has described Holiday Destination as a studio album. However, there is little to fear in terms of this record being too polished, as it's lost none of the character of her previous efforts. "Yes Men" is an example of light production touches serving the songs beautifully as Shah's vocal is repositioned to the fore. The pace is slowed, but not at the expense of impact -- her voice admonishes sycophants who peddle lies in service to their own agenda with a rich sensory power. It's an album filled with wonderful moments from the delicious grooves of "Evil" to "Mother Fighter's" entrancing hooks, and they only ever serve to deepen Shah's message. To have made this collection as musically grim as the problems she addresses could have left a sense of hopelessness ringing in the air. But this lively and spirited musical landscape celebrates music's ability to unite as much as it eloquently protests division. © Bekki Bemrose /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released June 7, 2017 | 1965 Records Limited

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Alternative & Indie - Released April 20, 2017 | 1965 Records Limited

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Nadine Shah in the magazine
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