2010-03-26Hailing from Manchester, England is newcomer Lonelady (aka Julie Campbell.) With a sound inspired from a plethora of places, including the post-punk scene of her hometown, Lonelady manages to capture a sound largely categorized as synth laced pop-rock with some guitar thrown in as well. She first began making waves with her debut single, “Hi Ho Bastard/Fear No More” (released June 2005). This was followed that October with the “Have No Past” EP. LoneLady’s first show outside Manchester was at 2006’s SXSW festival in Texas - where she was invited to play on the strength of these 4-track recordings. Billboard listed LoneLady as one of their ‘Ones to watch’ in their SXSW 2007 preview feature. LoneLady signed to Warp Records in 2009 and now we have "Nerve Up" - her first full-length release. Quite noticeable throughout is the guitar work that manages to bring back memories of the early B-52's. This is especially notable on the track "Intuition" that combines the biting vocals of Campbell with an overall catchy beat. The opener, "If Not Now" is also worth a few spins as Cambell's somewhat unique voice immediately comes to the forefront. The title track "Nerve Up" incorporates a drum-machine and an attitude from Lonelady that makes for a really good song. Another track that especially stands out here is the beautiful "Marble" with its electro-pop feel and reverb effects. In the end, while the guitars and the same overall sound can be a bit tiresome, the debut of Lonelady is pretty good as Campbell recaptures a sound from the past and makes it relevant for today's music scene! ~ Reviewed by Jeff Bouma
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