Earlier today, Nadine Shah announced her forthcoming third album, Holiday Destination, out August 25 on 1965 Records. And while that’s more than a season and then some away, the English musician has delivered a tide over with the first single, “Out the Way,” a scathing take on the current political climate both in her home country and in the United States, particularly when it comes extreme patriotism and the blindness that tends to go hand in hand with it.
“So on this one trip to the States,” Shah says in a statement, “I’m taken to the other side of the airport in this room where everyone in the room has brown skin — and they’re all looking at me like ‘what the fuck are you doing here?!’ I just made this joke, I just said — ‘oh, I’m Pakistani.’ And then everyone started to laugh. But it’s just like — that’s totally about a rise in nationalism that I’m seeing. It’s completely terrifying.”
“Even on Twitter I’ve had people telling me ‘oh, go back to where you’ve come from’ — and I’m like what? South Shields? It’s a proper identity crisis for me. I’m a second-generation immigrant — I was born in England, I’m very English — proper fucking English, mate!” she jokes, before adding “but I’m also culturally Muslim.”
Punctuated by a militaristic drumbeat and jagged saxophone lines courtesy of Acoustic Ladyland’s Pete Wareham, “Out the Way” has Shah directly addressing being a second generation immigrant in the lyrics and at one point posing the question: “Where would you have them go/A generation searching for a home.”
Despite it’s overt politics, the track is hardly a downer, if anything, it’s the complete opposite, full of inspiration and chill-inducing intensity. Listen to it below.
Featured Nadine Shah photo by Anna Victoria Best.