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nadine shah

Holiday Destination

1965 Records Limited


Released: 25th Aug 2017


2lp + poster + download

Released: 25th Aug 2017


Why aye man! One of our fave artists has blown her previous masterpieces out of the water - Hard-hitting, richly imaginative and lyrically explorative.

So often lyrics play a periphery role to the instrumentation, delivery and atmosphere of a record but Nadine’s work has always managed to make her acerbic observations central to her songs. Delivered with her distinct smoky Northern vocal stylings (her broad Geordie dialect only enhancing the burning intensity), they are the primary “instrument” within each song, without ever being intrusive or overbearing. Both the lyrics and instrumentation are brave and uncompromising, equally able to convey balance and harmony as they are discord and struggle.

This theme of harmony versus struggle runs throughout the record, as for every beautiful melodic moment, there’s an abrasive counterpart. The album ricochets in a persistent flux of push and pull, peace and turmoil, settled and dislodged. This sense of displacement reflects the continuous theme of the album – her position in our current messed up society as a British Muslim woman of Norwegian/Pakistani heritage means her identity is constantly being brought into question. “Where would you have me go? I’m second generation don’t you know.” This frustrated questioning comes on album highlight, ‘Out The Way’, probably the defining song of her career so far. With Pete Wareham (Melt Yourself Down)’s taut, squalling saxophone boiling beneath her contemplations, it’s a masterpiece of serrated, vehement song-writing... as is almost everything else on this punchy tour de force.

Although only occasionally sonically akin, the prevailing unsettling mood of the record echoes that of her friend, Ghostpoet’s (see No.12). As her longtime producer and co-writer, Ben Hillier has done an outstanding job of delivering Nadine’s stormy brews with warmth and cohesion. With so much to explore lyrically and in the musical layers, you’ll be returning to this ‘Holiday Destination’ time and time again.

“Smart & bitter laments” – Uncut

“An album of beautiful horror” - Drowned In Sound


Holiday Destination

  1. Place Like This
  2. Holiday Destination
  3. 2016
  4. Out The Way
  5. Yes Men
  6. Evil
  7. Ordinary
  8. Relief
  9. Mother Fighter
  10. Jolly Sailor