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A review of...
Oh My by Nadine
This debut album from Minneapolis trio Nadine is released on Memphis Industries in the UK and I can't think of a more appropriate home for an album which is smooth as an eel and full of pristine pop-jazz-funk. It certainly seems that Memphis Industries are forging their image as a label with a type (certainly Field Music, Dutch Uncles and Slug cross over into similar styles, albeit in very different ways). But this release takes that easy-going vibe and adds in some even more blatant sophisti-pop flourishes whilst also touching on Portishead's dark ambience (see "Contigo") and even fellow Minneapolitan Prince's early output.
It could easily be argued that things occasionally get a bit too smooth or overly sugary, but there's something in the production (especially around the bass and drums) that pulls the record back down to earth and gives it an almost homemade feel. Nadia Hulett's easy going vocal delivery certainly helps to ground it too .
I'm not familiar with any of the bands who've loaned their members to this project - the press release seems keen to point out that this is a "project" rather than a band - but on hearing this record I'm keen to investigate (Nadia Hulett is a member of the Phantom Posse collective and Julian Fader & Carlos Hernandez are from Ava Luna in case you are interested).
Highlights include the album's low key opening number "Nook", with its sci-fi synth lines and simplistic piano hook, the clattering percussion only adds to the slightly disorientating effect. "That Neon Sign" is a particular standout in that it strips everything back to just Hulett's pure vocals and a droning organ, and it pays off magnificently. I could listen to a full album of this, no problem.
This is an interesting debut which certainly captures a sound and a mood that i'd imagine won't be synonymous with the year 2018. Check it out.