tUnE-yArDs - Nikki Nack

Nikki Nack is the third album of giddy, euphoric art-pop from Merrill Garbus, better known as tUnE-yArDs, and if anything, she’s only become more unhinged and ecstatic and freewheeling with time. Her last album, 2011′s w h o k i l l, topped critics’ polls and turned Garbus into the type of artist who gets to tour bigger clubs without compromising one iota of her weirdness, so it’ll be fun to see where this new one takes her. We’ve already posted her early songs “Water Fountain” and “Wait For A Minute,” and now the full album is streaming below.

Nikki Nack is out 5/6 on 4AD.

Comments (15)
  1. Genius

  2. whokill was my favorite album of 2011. This is way better.

  3. This music just takes you places. So. Fucking. Good.

  4. I was given an advance copy of this album to review, which was weird because I’d never listened to tUnE-yArDs before ( mainly because of the annoying capitalization required to spell her band name).

    Seems like I’ve been missing out! She’s a PHENOMENAL lyricist. Makes me think the lyrics come first and then the music is made to form fit her words. Her vocal range is all over the place and I don’t know how much ground she covered on her previous LPs, but she covers A LOT of vocal styles on Nikki Nack.

    What are everyone’s thoughts on The Tots interlude? Is it 2014′s M83 “Frog Song” ?

    Anyway, coming from someone who had never listened to her before, I must say I’m impressed.

    • Oh, dude, you’ve GOT to hear her previous album, whokill. It’s fantastic. It also won the Pazz & Jop critics’ poll for best album of 2011 (the lowest-selling / lowest-charting album ever to win it), so you could say the bar was set pretty high for this one. But I actually think this one is better.

      • whokill is brilliant. Topped my list in 2011 as well. But yeah, this is fantastic. The production is much more solid, but she didn’t lose any of her unpredictability. I’m glad you mentioned her lyrics. She truly is an incredible lyricist. I love the “He gave me a dollar / a blood-soaked dollar” lyrics in “Water Fountain.”

        The way she builds her songs is stunning. “Time of Dark” might be a top 10 song of 2014.

        • “time of dark” is amazing. it was a standout even in the megamix.

          on this album, it seems her gift for the calmer, more eerie and ethereal tunes (like “wooly wolly gong” and “little tiger”) has found harmony with her obvious knack for building intensity in layers on layers. there’s depth and atmosphere here.

          “wait for a minute” is another great example.

    • Points for any mention of Raconte-Moi Une Histoire.

      If it bears any resemblance to that song, it will have me smiling uncontrollably.

    • Definitely listen to w h o k i l l immediately. It’s not quite as good start to finish as this one but it’s got some great songs. Bizness might have been my favorite song from 2011. This album feels simultaneously more ambitious and more accessible, though.

      I liked that frog song and would never skip it while playing that album. The Tots interlude was hilarious and I’m glad it’s on the album, it definitely adds something, but I would imagine I’ll end up skipping it most of the time.

  5. loved it

  6. Great album, a real grower too. Could be in the top 10 of the year.

  7. This album is excellent on first listen, and like finnegans wake said, is a grower too. She just makes music that is hands-down more interesting, inventive, and full than almost all other music being made. Can’t stop listening.

  8. Holy crap. So good. Man, the production is fantastic and the music is even better. What a talent.

  9. Holy crap I can’t believe I waited this long to stream this. I seriously can’t remember the last time I was immediately blown away by an album like this. MBDTF maybe? w h o k i l l was incredible but I really didn’t think she had it in her to do something like that again, and then she just went and blew that out of the water…

  10. Annie Clark and Merril Garbus, the first half of 2014 is all yours.

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