Nadine Shah: Kitchen Sink review – An on-the-nose exploration of misogyny
Moving from the political themes of 2017’s Mercury-nominated Holiday Destination, English singer Nadine Shah, whose ancestry is a mix of Pakistani and Norwegian, dives headfirst into the personal on her fourth album. Divulging private conversations and innermost thoughts, she explores the societal expectations and failings that women from all walks of life face.
Shah’s voice rattles through the double standards in men dating younger women versus women dating younger men on Cougar Club, and she takes digs at the assumption that all women want to have children on Ladies for Babies (Goats for Love).With lyrics that feel like they’re taken directly from a rant among friends, she sings so that women release the pressure that’s coming at them from all angles. “Forget about the curtain twitchers, gossiping boring bunch of bitches,” she sings on the plunky title track, encouraging a life without worry.
If your inner voice is mimicking the toxicity of a partner, the rumble and tumble of the spiteful Buckfast is an outlet for all snarling thoughts. Weaving together tales that feel all too familiar, the musical backdrop is suitably jarring, with menacing percussion and jangly guitar hooks that amplify the message even further.
If you’ve ever felt isolated by the constraints that misogyny brings on, the many voices and stories gathered on Shah’s on-the-nose album proves that you’re not alone.