After five years of near silence whilst working on the Netflix series GLOW, Kate Nash returns to the music scene with her refreshing second album which she released as an independent musician, Yesterday Was Forever. Funded using Kickstarter, an online platform where donations can be made to raise money for creative projects, the album is an inspiration for talented independent artists.
Kate Nash is back and here to remind us she can do more than ‘Foundations’. Opening with the grungy ‘Life in Pink’, reminiscent of the 90s pop-punk, it seems the stage is set for an album full of catchy tracks. Yet here Nash is, in fact, contrasting meaningful lyrics about her mental health with upbeat, lively music; she sings about looking through pink heart-shaped sunglasses when she feels down to try and make things seem better. ‘Drink About You’, has poppy riffs and another catchy chorus you’ll find yourself performing in the shower. ‘Life in Pink’ and ‘Drink About You’ accumulate Nash’s abilities as a witty lyricist and talented musician, clearly acting as the front runners of the album.
‘Twisted Up’ offers a nostalgic return to her Girl Talk days with punk-inspired electric riffs, telling us she’s “back from the dead”. In comparison, the slower ‘Always Shining’ has a romantic acoustic tone backed up with lyrics about an unrequited love. The jokey ‘My Little Alien’ consists of sweet verses about her rescued dog rather than an actual alien. Accompanied by a 50s-style and dreamy guitar riffs, Nash sings about loving the stranger things in life. The final track, ‘To the Music I Belong’, conveys meaningful lyrics whilst the hip-hop inspired chorus stands out as unique against the otherwise poppy track list. Nash delves into a new genre whilst reminding us of what she can do.
There are a few songs that fail to stand out from the rest. However, this is understandable for an album consisting of fourteen tracks. ‘California Poppies’, the violent chorus of which genuinely made me jump upon first listening, seems a bit muddled. ‘Karaoke Kiss’ shows Nash’s attempt at electro-pop that I would otherwise have applauded if the intro wasn’t a replica of Taylor Swift’s ‘Style’. Others such as ‘Take Away’ are perhaps too reminiscent of her 2007 Made of Bricks days, singing about watching Buffy and spooning – slightly cringed. Several songs such as these are lost amongst the otherwise unique and memorable tracks of the album.
Nash’s lyrics, inspired greatly by her strong feminist opinions, are sadly unlikely to venture into the ears of new listeners. So far, nothing from the album has reached the Top 50. Undoubtedly, this is unlikely to stop her continuing to make music for the dedicated fan base she’s already created over the years.