Nicoel Atkins stands for a unique combination of Psychedelic, Americana and Soul. On 29th May 2020, Atkins released her latest album, Italian Ice. I was really curious how she had developed over the years. Here is my review.
Nicole Atkins – About The Artist
Nicole Atkins was born on 1st October 1978. She grew up in Shark River Hills in New Jersey, which is part of Neptune City. She started to play the piano at 9 and the guitar at the age of 13 years. After her high school years, during which she did some local concerts, she studied Illustration in Charlotte. During that time, she participated in bands, but also acted as a songwriter. Her first EP release was the the band Los Parasols in 2002. Finally, in 2006, she signed her first record deal and recorded her debut album Neptune City, which she recorded in Sweden. The album has been released in 2007.- The following album was Mondo Amore, dated as of 2011. Italian Ice is Nicole Atkins’ fifth album.
Nicole Atkins – Italian Ice – Track by Track
The eleven track album lasts 41 minutes.
1. A.M. Gold
The song starts with piano sounds, but then turns into a mixture of soul elements and electronic music. The rating of that song on Amazon Music is quite good, but it does not really touch me. I enjoy Nicole Atkins voice in here, though.
2. Mind Eraser
More rhythm, stronger drums. Mind Eraser feels rather mystic and could be a track which fits perfectly to a slightly antiquated thriller. I can hardly tell how to call this kind of music. The lyrics are not really more impressive:
When you’re surfing through a frozen wave
Dunes piled high, ex lovers waving “bye”
When you live life on a spending train
You’ll never see, you’ll never see your home again
Regarding the Amazon ratings, this is one of the best tracks of the album. Hmm… I feel a bit dumb and cannot really share that opinion. At least, it is a bit more touchy.
The instrumental beginning of the song very slightly reminds me of an experimental version of Cyndi Lauper’s Time after Time. Finally, Forever turns out to be to a quite melodic track and a not too bad listen.
I would not really call Captain an outstanding track, but this electronic country pop alike mixture of genres is not all bad from my side. Second track in a row which I do not dislike – let’s call it a streak!
6. Never Going Home Again
We are in the middle of country sounds now. This is my favorite so far. Sounds a bit like Nashville (not too surprisingly, Atkins lives there…). Not a must-buy track, but pretty solid.
Bank account’s bleeding while we are sleeping
In another murder motel
Landed on the blacklist of a couple journalists
I’ve met much better people in jail
Quite an interesting way to tell your story.
7. St. Dymphna
St. Dymphna sounds to me like a ballad of the early 1970’s. I enjoy this track quite much, which is also due to the fact that it is illustrating her vocal talent again.
8. Far From Home
Far From Home shows that St. Dymphna was just a first step travelling back in time. I cannot really tell youin which decade Nicole Atkins is now, but I definitely prefered her int he Dymphna ages…
9. A Road to Nowhere
Let’s make it quick: while I thought that Atkins could become friends around the middle of the album, I now think about the breakup. Maybe she is your perfect match? Here is her 4:14 minute argument.
10. These Old Roses
These old roses
I can’t throw away
Got this feeling
You’ll come back my way
Even though the sound of this one is again a bit too shopworn for me, at least there are some lyrics i can follow and overall, a not too bad song.
11. In The Splinters
Happy that it is the finale. I am happy. I just do not have use for Nicole Atkins music – and I cannot see any superb songwriting or storytelling quality. Her voice is her asset in my point of views. I am sure her fans see many more favors.
Nicole Atkins – Italian Ice – Spotify
Here is the Spotify widget to Nicole Atkins’ album:
Nicole Atkins – Italian Ice – Track by Track
I had quite some albums in the past, which I did not like at all personally, but just could not deny that they had good musical quality. Nicole Atkins is average in any way – sometimes even below that. So sad, as some passengers of her Straciatella feel like there could be some good scoops in this Italian Ice, but finally, the cream just feels as taken from a very different time. I just do not feel a reason to take that travel.
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