Made Of Bricks Review

artist: kate nash date: 01/14/2008 category: compact discs
kate nash: Made Of Bricks
Release Date: Aug 6, 2007
Label: Universal/Polydor
Genres: Alternative Singer/Songwriter, Indie Rock, Britpop
Number Of Tracks: 12
Nash has plenty of maturation to do as a songwriter and performer, but she shows considerable promise on this debut.
 Sound: 6.5
 Lyrics: 8
 Overall Impression: 8
 Overall rating:
 7.3 
 Reviewer rating:
 7.5 
 Users rating:
 7 
 Votes:
 16 
reviews (2) 1 comment vote for this album:
overall: 8
Made Of Bricks Reviewed by: sweetpeasuzie, on january 09, 2008
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Sound: The nuts and bolts holding Kate Nash's full length debut album Made Of Bricks together is made of catchy avant-pop movements with hues of Brit-pop basted in alternative-folk. The rhythm section on tracks like Mouthwash and We Get On have jazzy pop spurts emitting from the rhythm sections as Nash's vocals resonate with a Feist-like coolness. The finger snapping beats of Dickhead create a bluesy aura that cradles Nash's softly rapping vocals which show language that cuts right to the core. The country-folk guitar strums of Birds produce a soft base for Nash's angst-ridden lyrics, and the spontaneous outbursts and elegance in Nash's voice on Mariella have a likeness to Regina Spektor. The showers of electro-pop rolled keyboards on Shit Song are reflexive of Klaxons, and the ska-pop phrasing of Pumpkin Soup emotes a Lily Allen-tinged funk. Nash shows independence in the movements of her vocal melodies, oftentimes going outside the framework formed by the music notes like in the gypsy-punk tune Skeleton Song. The string arrangement in the track is a nice addition, though Nash has a habit of shaping distinctive hooks and vocal melodies that step away from the music like on the tune Nicest Thing. The final number Merry Happy is a cheery melody with an andante tempo that keeps everything uplifted. // 7

Lyrics: Kate Nash's lyrics express candidness without holding back from being offensive. Whatever is on her mind comes out of her mouth like in the song Dickhead as she spews, Why you being a dickhead for? / Stop being a dickhead. Think you know everything/ You really don't know nothing/ I wish that you were more intelligent/ So you could see that what you are doing is so shitty to me. I love that bluntness which Regina Spektor also applies to her lyrics. Of course, being so blunt can be offensive which may cause cuts that create irreparable damage, but sometimes such bluntness jolts someone's system into action to make changes for the better. // 9

Overall Impression: Kate Nash's album Made Of Bricks represents current music conditions. Her vocal style is in fashion showing similarities to Feist, Lily Allen and Regina Spektor but without sounding exactly like them. Though Nash has a more folksy vibe in her music and vocals than the above-mentioned recording artists, she has the same pop-sheen that glosses her songs. The melodies are not too cluttered but not too sparse, they show moderation in their layering and have a comfort level associated with The Kooks music. Nash's album Made Of Bricks which was produced by Paul Epworth (New Order, U2, Goldfrapp), is right for the current times, and at 20-years old that is all that she needs to shoot for with this album. // 8

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overall: 7
Made Of Bricks Reviewed by: hippytom, on january 14, 2008
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Sound: I first heard of Kate nash when a friend of mine sent me some bootlegged tracks she found somewhere on the internet. Kate Nash is a very talented musician, and has appeared and played competently on the Jools Holland show. She had been referred to as 'an english Regina Spektor', which can be heard within her lyrics. My only issue with her sound is that the tracks have become too layered between the bootlegs and the album versions, which have made the sound somewhat busier than her initial performances culd have predicted. For someone who believes that music is best when it is at it's most simplest, she hires a hell of a lot of backing musicians, who just seem to distort the purity of her sound. Nevertheless, Kate Nash is a competent pianist, and the speed at which she wrote the album further proves her competence. The story behind her becoming a musician is quite interesting. She was an aspiring actress for years before she turned her hand to recording music. It took a fall down a flight of stairs and a broken leg to bring her back to the piano she so loved to play in her youth. With the rest period came recording time. And with the ingenuity of myspace music, she uploaded some tracks, and was soon a popular artist within the myspace music world. It was a top friend placing on Lily Allen's music page that gave her the rise to fame. The album was finished long before she recorded it in a studio. It took her sudden leaking of 'Foundations' to spark the interest of record companies. // 6

Lyrics: Kate Nash's lyrics are very gritty and disgustingly british. She doesn't hold back, and although the album versions of many tracks involve lyrics diluted from the original recordings, you can't always blame the artist for the mistakes of sound engineers. The short choppy accented lyrics fit perfectly with her generally short, repetitive phrases. Her skills as a singer are questionable. Can she sing, but chooses to sing badly? Or does she sing badly because she can't sing properly? That is a question only she can answer. The studio has obviously done everything they can to make her sound as good as they can, but the problem with that is, with vocals that are meant to sound gritty and accented, tryig to perfect the lyrics has removed something. I just cannot put my finger on it // 7

Overall Impression: Of course, Kate Nash's sound is that of her peers and influences. Including Lily Allen and Regina Spektor. In fact, I would go as far as saying the only difference is that Kate seems to play more of her own instrument, and sings less that Lily Allen. I'd say that, although it's initial success, 'Foundations' is becoming quickly overplayed, with 'Pumpkin soup' following in it's footsteps. She seems to have turned from a raw musician, focusing on the music, to being an artiste focusing on production values of her music, relying less and less on her own talent as a musician, and more on the ability of her supporting musicians. However, I love the way she seems to write lyrics without sparing a moment to consider who she is offending. I hate the way she has progressed as a musician. If this album was stolen, I'd not buy it again. I would refind the bootlegged versions of her songs, as to me they reflect the artist she couldve become if she hadnt relyed so much on the layering of her music. // 8

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