Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Kate Nash - Made of Bricks (Polydor)

You've all seen the propaganda for Limited Edition Coca-Cola with Orange, right? It's hard to miss the posters and the magazine ads and the in-store displays. And, in fairness, it doesn't sound like too bad an idea, does it? So you try it. And you soon discover that it tastes like the devil's ballbag.

It's all rather similar to Kate Nash, and moreover, her overhyped debut Made of Bricks. You may question comparisons to the above fizzy evil, but the mixture of initial eye-catching promise soon deflated by the sticky, artificial taste sums both products up rather aptly.

What some may hear as simplified, stripped-bare charm is actually awkward, oafish chatter, most of which sounds as though it's been made up on the spot. Shockingly bad lyrics are in abundance on Made of Bricks, as demonstrated to its fullest on Mouthwash ("I've got a family/And I drink cups of tea") and matched only by stinking grammatical errors (see Dickhead's irksome "Why you being a dickhead for?"), which feel horribly contrived just to achieve the same cod-working-class schtick that made Blur such utter fuckwits.

There are a couple of high(er) points - the engaging journey recounted in the loony acceleration of Mariella is certainly impressive, until Nash chooses to tell the story in the style of Russell Brand. Meanwhile, Birds sees a lone moment of tender sincerity, but is entirely washed away by the neverending torrent of cringeworthy Mockney squawking.

The production is the one true redeeming feature, but rather than rescuing the album from Nash's gobby pigswill, it just invokes a feeling of pity that the tracks weren't used on more worthwhile artists. Just considering the genius that Amy Winehouse could have conjured over the music of We Get On, or the cyber-R&B sorcery Amerie could have applied to Play only serves to highlight Made of Bricks as an even bigger waste of time.

From start to finish, Made of Bricks is like Jennifer Saunders ad-libbing a parody of Lily Allen. Which in itself would be funny, yet Kate Nash appears to be entirely serious. Sure, there's a level of talent and some highly unique qualities there, but it all just feels very, very fake, and gets boring very, very quickly. Like Coca-Cola with Orange, it's first and foremost a money-spinning gimmick. But luckily, just like Coca-Cola with Orange, you needn't worry about it being around much longer.

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