Kate Nash @ The Melkweg, Amsterdam, 21/08/2017

Made of Bricks was released when I was 15. The lyrics seemed so relevant to all aspects of my life and I enjoyed singing “I would rather be with your friends mate, coz they are much fitter” loudly with my friends at the park on a Friday night. Fast forward ten years to The Melkweg, a cool venue in Amsterdam, where Kate Nash preformed to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of this former number one album.

This was the last night of her tour and from what I had seen on Instagram it had been a lot of fun. This was certainly the vibe I got on the night too. She shuffled onto the stage wearing a huge frilly dress and sang the first verse of ‘Foundations’ before leaving her all-female band to finish the song with heavy guitar replacing the delicate keyboard. She came back and played the whole album: most of the songs were given a new rockier sound that worked really well. Nash head-banged, jumped around and threw herself on the floor with so much energy to every song that demanded it. The crowd got really into it too, especially to the big, upbeat hits such as ‘Mouthwash’ and ‘Dickhead’ and sang their hearts out when Nash brought out an acoustic guitar for slower songs like ‘Birds’ and ‘Nicest Thing’. She remained true to her British roots between songs: drinking tea, thanking the crowd and asking the guitarist “you alright, Linda?” in her very London accent. She also spoke sincerely about the significance of the songs, being true to who you are and not worrying about being seen as different and not fitting in. These were all met with cheers and the occasional, “Smash the patriarchy!”

Once the initial show had finished, the band returned to do an encore of new songs: ‘California Poppies’, ‘Musical Theatre’ and ‘Agenda’. Nash talked passionately about the importance of removing the stigma around mental health issues before ‘Musical Theatre’ and explaining how it reflected her own struggles. The politically charged ‘Agenda’ echoed previous stances she has made around feminism and the value of speaking out when something is wrong. After playing ‘Merry Happy’, she left the stage once more before returning and being given a big bunch of flowers by a member of the crew. She then bought all the band and crew on stage to lip sync and dance to ‘Time Of Your Life’ (complete with lift!), before diving into the crowd.

Overall, it was like seeing an old friend have the best time with her mates and I really hope she tours her new music soon because I can’t wait to see her again!

Words and images by Megan Jones

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