Startlingly different double-CD debut from precocious teen songsmith
Stickering Nellie McKay’s debut album as a cross between Doris Day and Eminem is one way of attracting attention. The comparison is nonsense on both counts, but you’re already hooked. There is a debt to Tin Pan Alley, torch singing and Broadway musicals, and a couple of tracks make polite nods in the direction of hip hop. But it’s McKay’s vivacious wit that makes the 19-year-old British-born New Yorker’s debut memorable. Think Randy Newman crooned in a voice like Peggy Lee and delivered with the panache of Rufus Wainwright.