Album review: Nina Nastasia – ‘Outlaster’ (Fatcat)

Don't be fooled, she's more raptor than songbird

Of all the female singer-songwriters around today, [a]Nina Nastasia[/a] is perhaps the most deceptive. To the casual observer her crystalline vocals and sparse guitar arrangements may seem if not Newsom-ly elfin, at least a bit cutesy. What her sixth album reminds us of is that there is a darker heart beating beneath her delicate surfaces. Backed by a forlorn mini-orchestra and recorded by famed caustic noisenik and [a]Shellac[/a] man Steve Albini, Nastasia opts for her plushest, lushest sound yet, one that delves into doomed romances (‘This Familiar Way’) and the unknown (‘Outlaster’). As such, it’s one of her most eerily accomplished works to date.

Ash Dosanjh

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