Norwegian singer/songwriter Emilie Nicolas is thinking outside the box: her debut album Like I’m A Warrior has been turning heads at home and now abroad. It has been streamed over 8 million times on Spotify, reached number one on the charts in Norway and was nominated for the Phonofile Nordic Music Prize. While the starlet has her eyes set on the UK and probably the rest of the world, we are yet to familiarise ourselves with Nicolas’ talent. Now’s our chance to listen to Like I’m A Warrior and see what can be made of the hype.
The overall atmosphere of Nobody Knows is quite subtle, but the song holds your attention right up to its climactic yet gentle end. Let You Out is reportedly Emilie’s favourite track to play live. With its dramatic stringed synths and captivating chorus it became clear why: melody-wise it’s definitely interesting. Single Grown Up has been highly acclaimed both at home and in the UK for its emotive concept and delivery; whilst the majority of the song is smooth and on the quiet side, it takes a little long to take off, but when it does it’s amazing. Melancholia definitely has elements of R&B to it with its persistent beat and snappy vocals, while Fail falls more into the electro pop genre with its crafted arrangement and catchy vocals.
Charge is definitely the surge of electricity the album needed, adding to the theme of frustration. Lyrically Us shone, but sonically a lot more could have been done to deliver the emotions expressed in the words; it came off a little flat at times when it needed a lift. Emilie covered Norwegian group Dumdum Boys’ track Pstereo in English, becoming her first radio hit at home with its luscious pop aura and sweet melody. More smooth and appealing vocal work can be heard in the easily listened to Games, and lastly Put Me Down ends the album on another emotional note with Emilie’s desperate melody line and dramatic chorus instrumentation.
Like I’m A Warrior sure was an interesting release: it’s no wonder how Emilie Nicolas has gone from being a music student to a Norwegian radio favourite with a talent like hers. The girl can write a song or a few and you find yourself hanging on every word, particularly when the arrangement becomes just as emotionally inclined as the lyrics. There were moments however where the sound could have been a little more versatile to shake it up, but other than those select few times the overall sound worked well for Emilie; the world needs to jump on board and recognise her undeniable talent as a singer/songwriter.