Nerina Pallot – The Graduate
Do you remember that advert from a couple of years ago? A girl in a supermarket, singing about war, food flying everywhere? That girl was called Nerina Pallot. The song? Everybody’s gone to war.
Back then Nerina’s record company must have been on some sort of publicity drive as I swear I was always seeing the ad in between whatever I used to watch 4 years ago. This publicity push must have greatly influenced me as I went to HMV (it was back in the days of CD buying you see) and bought her album Fires. From then on, I was in love.
Not only did I repeatedly listen to Fires, I bought Nerina’s back catalogue. I discovered the beauty of Blood is Blood from her debut album and found ways of hearing unreleased material like the beautiful Heidi. I saw her live twice; I even met her once. Not without it’s difficulties though. Apparently I’d unwittingly bought a ticket to an over 18 gig. As a 15 year old who barely looked her age, I was a little stumped at being asked for ID. Fortunately, with a little bit of crying from my friend, we were allowed in and were treated to a stunning performance, topped off only by meeting the lovely lady at the end of the night. And subsequently missing the last train home, paying for a taxi from Tottenham Hale to Bishops Stortford.
Anyway, Nerina has a new(ish) album. The Graduate. Perhaps the title has been chosen to show the progression in Nerina’s music. Perhaps it’s far simpler than that and is to do with her recently obtaining a degree. I’ll let you decide that one yourself. Looking past the title, each song is full of equally sublime content.
The first single Real Late Starter is upbeat, contrasting to some of the singles from her last album. Whilst Fires brought us the sombre Sophia and Idaho, this album opts for some brighter tones. The humorously named When did I become such a bitch? was written, perhaps autobiographically, by Nerina after Fires release and immediately became a favourite at live performances.
My personal favourite would have to be Coming Home. It’s truly heartfelt. The story of a father/daughter relationship; she sings “I’ll make you proud one day/but I know you’ll love me anyway” and you can tell that this isn’t a song full of over exaggeration and embellishments. It’s her life she’s singing about. And she does know how to sing about it well. Whilst I’m yet to see a live performance of this song, I’ve been told it’s something that should not be missed.
In English Nerina sings of the faults of our nation. Being born and bred in Jersey, Nerina clearly loves her homeland a little more than in our country, apparently full of “hatred and bigotry”. Her voice shines in this slower song. Not that I’m saying it doesn’t in others. I’m just a sucker for the more depressing songs. God of Small Things has a similar tempo which I enjoyed. Whilst the chorus of Junebug knows how to make me smile.
The catchy I don’t want to go out has even prompted a series of live Monday night streamings of mini-gigs from Nerina’s lounge. They can be viewed, for free, at http://www.ustream.tv/nerinapallot Monday nights at 9pm GMT.
As my entirely non-biased review has shown, I’m a little bit fond of Nerina’s music. She knows how to write a quality song whilst being able to sing it equally impressively. If you’ve not heard of her, then you are definitely missing out. Check her out on twitter @ladychatterley and then be sure to download something of hers!