Kate Nash ‘My Best Friend Is You’ – Review

19 Apr

Remember when you couldn’t walk out of your front door without hearing ‘Foundations’? No? Well then count yourself lucky because the rest of us were pretty sick of Kate Nash by the end of 2007. As far as I was concerned I never wanted to hear Lilly Allen jr again.

But shock horror, ‘I Just Love You More’, the first free download from this album, was actually very good. It reminded me that there may once have been a time when I did like ‘Foundations’ or at least understand why it was so popular. Was this an anomaly or could Kate Nash pull of a decent second record? Early signs were good, ‘Do Wah Doo’ was another great single, a slice of girl group pop that recalled The Pippettes or The Long Blondes a few years ago. ‘My Best Friend Is You’ begins on a similar note with ‘Paris’ and ‘Kiss the Grrrl’ both of which are loaded with hooks and memorable choruses. It’s also notable that Nash has a new angry streak;  it sounds like she has been listening to a lot of riot grrrl. ‘Ive got a Secret’ for example has an edge that just wasn’t present on her twee debut.

Whilst Nash has clearly moved on in a lot of areas the album is filled with the same ‘say what your thinking’ lyrics that  made up ‘Made of Bricks’. On ‘Don’t You Want To Share The Guilt’ she notes that ‘barbecue food is good, you invite me out to eat it – I should’. It rarely reaches the level of annoyance that made songs like ‘Mouthwash’ such a cringe-fest but you do wonder at times why she feels the need to open her mouth when all she has to say is ‘I hate being sick’ – newsflash Kate – we all do! Worse still is the terrible spoken word ‘Mansion Song’ where she hits us with some awful ‘words of wisdom’. Seriously whichever producer / record exec let this abomination of a song on the album should be fired, it’s a terrible diversion that completely breaks up the flow of things. Fair enough, Nash has been reading poetry and going to spoken word performances, but she’s no poet and the song will leave her fan base flat-out confused and bewildered.

In fact things go rapidly down hill after this, the second half feels very disjointed and a bit flat. The spark is definitely missing on ‘Later on’ and ‘Pickpocket’ but things pick up a bit with ‘I Hate Seagulls’ which is the song most reminicant of the old Kate – still a bit annoying but kind of likeable.

‘My Best Friend Is You’ is a good second album that introduces the world to the new Kate Nash, kind of like the old one but more experienced, less twee and with plenty of bite. The album’s a bit of a bumpy ride but it’s worth it for the moments where everything falls nicely into place. It’s worth mentioning that I haven’t mentioned Lilly Allen since the first paragraph and those comparisons have certainly been buried this time around. Kate Nash has become her own woman and It will be interesting to see where she goes next.

6.5/10

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