Nothing But You, NICKY: “LIPS” – filled with nuance and sensitivity

Nothing But You, Nicky is a name you might not have heard before, but the singer is working hard to change this rather sooner than later! Nicky, who grew up in Japan, but is now based in San Francisco, is preparing the release of her new album. It is set to come out next summer, but first, she graces us with the brand new single ‘LIPS’, which is now available everywhere for streaming and download, through her very own label Phoenix Records. The song was written by Multi-award winning singer/songwriter, Emine SARI and Multi-platinum winning engineer and producer, Joel Evenden who has worked with scores of legendary artists including Eric Clapton, Lara Fabian, Rod Stewart and B.B. King. Mixed and Mastered by Evenden, the track is released via Phoenix Records, and is available on all major downloads platforms.

I’ve always found it fascinating the way your mind can so vividly match up a familiar sound with a particular time or place, especially in the case of music. Whether you’re revisiting an old favorite or expanding into uncharted territory, any individual song has the ability to conjure up potent mental imagery with little to no effort – it’s just the way the brain is wired.

For me personally, Nothing But You, NICKY’s track, “LIPS”, will be a constant reminder of the quiet surging power of the ocean’s undercurrent, as well as its inescapable beauty and mystique. What kind of imagery it will carry for each individual is anyone’s guess, but it’s hard not to feel a connection with such a profoundly intimate sounding soliloquy.

There are two versions of the song available. One has gentle organic instruments such as an acoustic bass, a piano and guitar, while the other sees Nicky accompanied by a gently picked acoustic guitar, played by Oguz Ertok. Nicky’s deeply rich voice straddles, spreads and caresses each note in a sultry evocation of sensual contact.

There are delicately sung sections that are so restrained and poignant they even bring to mind the poetic genius of Chopin, whose own performances were noted for their nuance and sensitivity.

I don’t know how she does it, but Nothing But You, NICKY manages to blow expectations away by constructing a song solely on the strength of a guitar and a voice and very little else.

Standard cute, quirky pop songstresses should take note. The way that “LIPS” raises the bar for singers everywhere typifies Nothing But You, NICKY’s singular ambition. She is not willing to settle for the ordinary, and whether it is through her tender lyrics, or resonant vocal inflections, and unexpected, stripped down arrangements such as this song, Nicky manages to keep listeners guessing.

One of the best things about Nothing But You, NICKY is that while her music is fairly straightforward, there are so many ingenious subtleties in her performance that set her apart from the rest of the pack. A withdrawn, smoky ballad that blends traces of Soul and Jazz, “LIPS” seems always on the cusp of breaking loose into some soaring climax, but it never does, because Nothing But You, NICKY has mastered the art of restraint – A rarity in today’s music scene.


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