Track Review: Nomad // Clairo

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Clairo has released the second single and opening track for her highly anticipated upcoming album, Charm. Atlanta-born and raised Claire Cottrill, better known by her stage name Clairo, is an indie-pop sensation who has gained significant prominence since she began releasing music at the young age of 13. Since then, she has collaborated with industry icons such as Rostam Batmanglij of Vampire Weekend and Jack Antonoff, respectively, to produce her two distinguished albums, Immunity and Sling. Her rise to critical acclaim was cemented when she won NME’s Best New Act in the World Award in 2020.

The latest release, ‘Nomad’, showcases Clairo’s exploration of Western, folksy influences, marking a welcomed evolution from her established track record in alternative and bedroom-pop genres. Commencing with beautifully plucked strings before Clairo’s velvety smooth vocals come into play, the track, both in title and lyricism, leans into the feeling of longing for the past and being romantically adrift. Right from the start, Clairo’s uncompromising emotion is clear as she sings, “I’d run the risk of losing everything / Sell all my things, become nomadic”, revealing her unwavering determination to do whatever it takes to reconnect with the love that we become aware of throughout the remainder of the track.

Despite the grand imaginative gesture outlined from the beginning, the track takes a more sombre turn as it progresses. Clairo suggests that being alone while remembering a past failed relationship is preferable to never having known the person at all, declaring: “I’d rather be alone than a stranger… I’d rather wake up alone than be reminded / Of how it was a dream this time.” It is this perfectly executed blend of hope and acceptance throughout the track that reaffirms Clairo’s reputation as not just a gifted singer-songwriter, but as an artist who masterfully captures the nuanced complexities and inner conflicts that we all encounter at various stages of our lives.

On the whole, ‘Nomad’ perfectly captures the process of coming to terms with losing fragments of one’s past. Though it is less upbeat and perhaps more solemn than the jazzy, pop-filled first single from the album, ‘Sexy to Someone’, the track offers a candid reflection on feelings of both desire and heartache that will resonate with many listeners. In a style not too dissimilar from that of her last album, Sling, ‘Nomad’ weaves layers of production to create a vulnerable yet rich and enchanting glimpse into her internal monologue, offering fans a promising preview of what to expect from the soon-to-be-released record.

Clairo’s third studio album, Charm, will be released on July 12 2024.

Words by Ruby Brown


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