The latest British singer-songwriter to be labelled the next best thing, Kate Nash, is all of 20 freaken years old. When I was her age, and in the year she was born, I too was once the star of the stage while performing an impersonation of Roger Daltry in a university residences lip-synching contest (we trashed our “gear” 20 seconds into “my generation”, just like the real Who). Apart from that, and of course our full-bodied hairdos, good ol’ Kate and I have very little in common. Shocking! Perhaps I should grow up and, pipe and slippers in hand, retire sleepily to the drawing room with some Journey, Kansas, Yes or Chicago… for an electrifying dose of prog rock. Ha.
Jenny Lewis look-a-like Nash (no relation to hoops star Steve, or CBC icon Knowlton… that I know of) has gone from regular teenager, to MySpace darling, to Q magazine award winner all in one year. In that span she’s come up with a killer tune, the piano-driven “Foundations”. This is golden and, for some strange reason, the juvenile girl-boy break-up theme doesn’t make me squirm (but then again, it’s no secret I’m a big fan of the RomComs). In the hands of an artist of lesser quality, and without Nash’s English accented talk-sing style, these lyrics would be vomit-inducing: "You said I must eat so many lemons, 'cause I am so bitter. I said 'I'd rather be with your friends mate, cause they are much fitter'". But she pulls it off and I’m convinced it is singularly due to her saying “Bit-ta” instead of “bitter”!!!
Overall, Nash has kinda got that Lily Allen/ female Arctic Monkeys thing going on in the way her songs tell a story and in the way she, genuine or forced, affects that accent with words like the aforementioned “bitter” and “con’t” in place of “can’t”. Good stuff. I’ll save “carry on wayward son” for when I’m 50.
Here’s the sanitized version of “Foundations” as heard on the latest Paste sampler: MP3 Foundations by Kate Nash
And here’s the overly literal visual interpretation of the song: VIDEO Foundations by Kate Nash