Nicole Atkins: Mondo Amore

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Nicole Atkins: <i>Mondo Amore</i>

Three years after her debut album, Neptune City, Nicole Atkins returns with gripping ferocity on Mondo Amore.

From the first track, “Vultures”, Atkins’ toe-tapping, foot-stomping, hip-swaying music moves through your bones. With years to perfect it, every note and beat seems crafted with intention and care, accentuating her equally deliberate words. The songs play like anthems, commanding you to sing along as her lyrics tell a long-awaited story.

Through the process of making the album, she broke up with her boyfriend, her band and Columbia Records, choosing to produce it on her own and eventually releasing it on Razor & Tie. “It was like the ending of life as you know it,” she told Paste last month. “It’s funny because most of the songs are about those three things at the same time, so in a lot of breakup records you want to point fingers, but I don’t think that this record is like that at all.”

Effortlessly blending rock, blues, country and soul, Atkins has delivered on Mondo Amore with a collection of songs that invites you into her world. Even the more somber songs are sung with a gritty earnestness that carries the energy of her more vibrant songs throughout the entire project.