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Album Review: Sky Ferreira – Night Time, My Time

Sky Ferreira is technically still a newcomer, can you believe that? Attaining the Guinness World Record for most inclusions on ‘Next Big Thing’ lists in the last decade, she has finally decided to release an album which is a good start to being a popstar. If you aren’t up to date with the Sky story, she basically burst onto the scene as a bubbly popstress complete with a wonderfully teenage EP title (‘As If’ – can you feel the sass dripping from it?). Acclaim and adoration wasn’t enough though, Sky went for a more mature approach and emerged with the ‘Ghost’ EP and ‘Everything Is Embarrassing’. Even more acclaim and even more adoration still  wasn’t enough though – Sky decided that mature electro-pop wasn’t her thing either. ‘Night Time, My Time’ is the answer to the question she’s posed for the last few years – what is Sky Ferreira all about? It has been a difficult journey to follow, the entire stop-start of her career acting as quite the deterrent but you have got to admire a girl that won’t release something she isn’t 100% proud of. That fact in itself should mean we’re in for quite a treat listening to this record then.

Despite the artsy cover and the moving away from simple electro-pop, it’s a treat to hear so many instant pop songs on the album. ’24 Hours’ is confidently one of Ferreira’s best tunes – it’s all about the nostalgic chorus and addictive post hook. Similiarly, ‘Heavy Metal Heart’ is the perfect combination of the gritty and pristine that underlines all of ‘Night Time, My Time’ – it’s another example of Sky’s impressive songwriting ability as it hits from the first listen.  ‘Boys’ and it’s downbeat refrain and crunchy verses feels like a Kim Wilde classic given a grungy makeover (perhaps due to it’s opening lyric sounding quite a bit like ‘Kids in America’ – never a bad thing).

These aren’t the only big moments though – Sky’s moody vocals match the songs perfectly and as she takes a moment to really deliver on ‘Nobody Asked Me (If I Was Okay)’, her angst really does sound all the more powerful in contrast the rest of the record which boasts a cooler-than-thou attitude that Ferreira actually has the persona to back up. Fans of the ‘As If’ EP shouldn’t be too put out though as they skip straight to the penultimate track – ‘Love In Stereo’ which harks back to her early days and has a spunkier and lighter vibe to it’s playful production. The only questionable thing about the campaign is that ‘You’re Not The One’ has lead it, whilst being outshined by over half of it’s fellow candidates.  ‘Ain’t Your Right’ also feels a bit like a misfire, if only because it hides a decent song within a subpar execution. Fear not though, we have the indie swell of ‘Omanko’ to look forward to. Initially, isolating and peculiar, it’s actually, a slow, brooding break that works as a respite from the mostly uptempo opus. Much better than a generic ballad.

So whilst it may have been six years in the coming, it’s not necessarily been six years in the making so we can forgive her few, minor shortcomings. By her own admittance, it took Sky sometime to decide on the foundations – the genre itself being a difficult choice, but despite the records few shortcomings, the sound is something that is essentially Sky Ferreira. In all of her incarnations, she’s been acclaimed thanks to the frustrating gift that she is just too talented for her own good – making waves in genres she didn’t really have her heart in. Now, blending indie touches with shimmering 80s pop, there seems to be a correlation between the artist and the music. Young, rebellious but surprisingly mature, ‘Night Time, My Time’ has been worth the wait.

Photo: Last.fm
Words: Simon McMurdo

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