Thursday 6 October 2011

Nicola Roberts Bests Other Girls Aloud Member's music with the release of "Cinderella's Eyes"

Girls Aloud member Nicola Roberts released her unashamedly 80's inspired debut album Cinderella's Eye on the 23rd of September. Being the quietest, and youngest, member of the girl group it was always a mystery what direction the singer would take if she decided to release any solo material at all. Honestly, I wasn't holding my breath for music and had assumed that her fashionista ways would taker her down the Victoria Beckham route into that world. But what do I know, and the release of her first single Beat Of My Drum-see end of post- took me totally by surprise with the left field sound she went for. That was the exciting moment that I sat up and took an interest, realising that Nicola Robert's may just be about to deliver something special on her debut album.

For a first time writer, Nicola Robert's handled the mammoth task of co-penning an entire album-bar the cover of The Korgis Everybody's Got To Learn Sometime- surprisingly well. Whereas most of our contemporary Diva's who write do so in a way that is general, cliched and somewhat detached, Nicola went the opposite way and kept her lyrics honest, interesting and unconventional.

Perhaps Nicola consciously wanted to change the ice queen persona that the media have given her by opening up because revelations are aplenty on Cinderella's Eyes. With each new song played another piece to the "Who is Nicola Robert's" jigsaw puzzle is subtly revealed to a listener, so that by the end of the album you feel like you've actually got to know the singer pretty well. The impression left is of a warm, sweet and slightly geeky individual who is still struggling with old insecurities that growing up in the media has only reinforced-listen to Sticks and Stones and I where she deal with the subject of her bulling and insecurities. It seems like Nicola Roberts has always been the underdog, and its a quality that only makes her more likeable.

Sticks and Stones:

Vocally, the album finds Nicola surprisingly capable with an adaptable voice that has many facets to it, though her slightly sharp and, at times, nasal tone may not be to everyone's liking. However, this isn't an album that is built on being vocal centric, so don't expect complex melisma or vocal flights of fancy. Its not because she isn't capable of doing so- see the belt in Porcelain Heart below- its more so that this is a body of work that has tired to insure it's strength lies in the compositions as a whole-the production, the writing and the voice- rather than a need for Nicola to show off, or prove something vocally if it doesn't fit with the song.

Porcelain Heart :

Cinderella's Eyes is without a doubt the strongest release by a Girls Aloud member to date, though that's a low hurdle to jump. It's in fact truer to say Nicola Roberts has given us one of the better pop albums of the year. Top notch production- provided by Diplo,Metronomy, Tikovoi and The Invisible Men- is one thing, but it's something that anyone can buy. The real surprise pull to this project is Nicola Roberts herself.

Rating: 4/5

Lucky Day

Beat of my Drum:


  1. Thats what I was surprised about, it seems to be the only way to sell these days, unless you are adele. Its just a bummer the album hasn't sold that well.

  2. I don't usually like albums since I find them as a disappointment but I absolutely LOVE this one! Nicola Roberts is my all time role model she's made me feel proud about my pale skin, and her make-up range (although I haven't tried it yet) looks absolutely crazily amazing and I can't wait to try it! This is deffinately my all time favourite album! <3 

  3. Vocally she reminds me of La Roux, Kate Nash, Louise Nurding (if you remember her!) and slightly of Cher Lloyd in some of the vocal stylings (the less extreme ones! No grimacing thank god). I'm glad she's chosen her own path and played to her strengths, rather than trying to copy someone else like Gaga or Rihanna.