There is a definite admiration that can be held for independent artists, due to the dedication it takes to put so much effort and toil into realising their ambitions. Nina Baker, the runner-up in MTV’s Brand New for 2013 unsigned competition, can be held in this regard particularly following her self-written, self-funded & self-produced album “Quite Frankly”, recorded at Rockfield, The Church & Abbey Road Studios in 2014.
The album, dedicated to her late grandfather Frank Baker is described as a roller-coaster of rhythm, soaring highs and wallowing lows, and this is clearly evident from only a few samples of the album’s tracks.
“Single Bed” which won ‘Best Song’ in the 2014 Best Of British Unsigned Awards, and saw her come runner up in the ‘Best Female’ category, plays with a Kate Nash style melody that is complemented by Nina’s beautifully gentle voice that swims seamlessly with her piano. There is a clear synchronicity with her backing band as a balance emerges that allows Nina’s voice to be the centerpiece for the song without leaving it bare.
The artist boasts an impressive list of names that she has supported live, including Foxes, Mick Flannery, Ella Eyre and Mark Morriss, as well as warming up for Robbie Williams and Monthy Python at the London O2.
“Breaking Every Rule” is a classically sounding track that has emotion running through it strongly that builds to a powerful climax displaying Ms. Baker’s versatility and ability to create a variety of ambiances through different songs.
“Bruising” has received global airplay, including BBC radio 2 and BBC 6 Music. Again, we get am impression of a well constructed mix of instrumental components that has been orchestrated by Nina, resulting in a very pleasant sounding track, that does not overpower but instead creates a subtle balance of emotive lyrics and intense piano playing.
Nina’s voice cannot be underestimated as it is the icing on the top of the cakes that are her songs. It is strong and substantial without being forceful and it will be a huge proponent for the singer-songwriter as her career progresses.
One gets the impression of momentum building for Nina Baker and with her debut album under her belt, there will surely be a lot of exciting times for the classically trained pianist ahead.