Lonelady - Nerve Up

Album Review by Euan Ferguson | 03 Feb 2010
  • Lonelady - Nerve Up
Album title: Nerve Up
Artist: Lonelady
Label: Warp
Release date: 22 Feb

Another week, another 80s-indebted British female solo singer? Keep reading – this one’s different. She doesn’t look like she was assembled from a kit by a sweating middle-aged record exec, and she channels the sparser, nervier beginning of that decade – more Joy Division than Prefab Sprout. Nerve Up has a substance that comes from the confident minimalism of its production – there are drums, guitars, vocals and synths where there have to be, and nowhere else. Lonelady, born and bred in Manchester, is clearly no stranger to the weird and compelling noises her city has produced over the years: Tony Wilson would have probably pounced on this back in the late 70s. The scratchy funk guitars on highlight Intuition bring back Devo, and the rest of the album is packed with perfectly pitched outsider pop. Well worth investigating, especially if you thought all artistic influence of merit had been wrung from the 1980s already. [Euan Ferguson]