Nead Next Door’s ‘Side B’ takes a candid and dreamy dive into love and loss

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Nead Next Door’s ‘Side B’ takes a candid and dreamy dive into love and loss

Words by Staff Writer

Dive into the indie rock, folk, country-pop world of Nead Next Door and let the music speak for itself.

The  musical landscape is about to be enriched by the mesmerising sounds of Nead Next Door, the moniker of non-binary artist Sinead Cristaudo, breaking through barriers with their latest release, Side B. Following the captivating Side A dropped earlier this year, this new dreamy duology promises to be a musical journey that transcends boundaries and resonates with the soul.

Side B comprises two tracks that encapsulate an indie rock/folk/country-pop fusion, offering a tantalising taste of Sinead’s eclectic musical palette. Creating feel-good and uplifting songs, you can picture yourself cruising down the road with the windows down, sun-kissed breeze in your hair, and these glistening tracks as your summer soundtrack.

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The first gem, ‘Tell Me About Europe’, unleashes a bright and summery indie rock vibe led by dynamic guitars, pulsating drums, and a pop vocal that echoes the influence of Olivia Rodrigo’s discography. Running for three minutes and 34 seconds, the song delves into the plea for a loved one to return from Europe, aiming to mend a fractured relationship—a chaotic yet hopeful anthem that captures the essence of existential questioning.

Meanwhile, ‘Black And Blue’ takes a detour into a folky/country-pop realm, influenced by the likes of MUNA, Kacey Musgraves, and early Taylor Swift. With slide guitar, banjo, and harmonies that stack like a harmonious quilt, the track explores the choice of solitude after past relationships have left one “black and blue.” It’s a reflective piece that taps into the vulnerability of choosing loneliness.

The beauty in Sinead’s Side B is that their music finds resonance in the dynamic intersections of genres, gifting fans a truly beautiful listening experience. From the angst-laden indie rock of ‘Tell Me About Europe’ to the introspective folky tones of ‘Black And Blue’, Sinead’s versatility shines through, singing with burning warmth and proving that they are a force to be reckoned with in the diverse musical landscape.

“I really, really love to play with genre! The genres I use are really inspired by the kind of story I want to tell,” they explain. “To me, an angsty story like TMAE just couldn’t be similar sonically to the more introspective Black and Blue. I have a song called ‘Prophet’, that’s a really sexy ‘gay awakening’ pop song, and to me that story and feeling couldn’t be anything but a bubblegum pop song. The songs choose their own genre/s in a way, as goofy as that sounds.”

Despite the vibrant, lush and upbeat nature of both tracks, the storytelling in Side B is laced with yearning, delivering a dialogue between hope and heartbreak.

“I always think of the songs on side B as a question and an answer,” Sinead explains. “‘Tell Me About Europe’ is quite chaotically hopeful, and essentially a question – when you come back from Europe will you tell me about it, despite everything that has happened? And then ‘Black and Blue’ is kind of the answer that they didn’t. And is essentially a song of reflection on your hopes being dashed romantically many times, or feeling as if you’ve been let down too much to want to keep pursuing that kind of connection.”

As a queer non-binary artist, Sinead’s identity is intricately woven into their captivating style of music, with lyrics being an integral part of their storytelling, drawing from personal experiences and emotions to create authentic and relatable narratives. From overtly queer tracks like ‘Prophet’ and ‘Pansexual Waltz’ to the broader lens through which they view life, Sinead brings a unique perspective to their storytelling. Their music becomes a canvas through which they explore and share experiences, making it both truthful and authentic.

“This is also something I think about a lot! I think my queerness is so intrinsically linked to my music. Particularly in ‘Pansexual Waltz’, I really wanted to create a song that spoke to the pansexual experience, I’d never heard a song like that so I wanted to write it. A lot of my life and experiences are through a queer lens, so in order for my writing to be truthful and authentic often my songs also pass through that lens.”

Explaining how songwriting becomes a vital outlet for processing emotions, a way to navigate the complexities of life, Sinead continues, “I think any queer and particularly sapphic person can relate to the idea that 95% of the time we are simply just in yearning town. I use my music to process everything I’m thinking and feeling (particularly my yearning) it’s a vital part of how I don’t lose my mind.

“Everyone has their things to get their thoughts out and for me that’s songwriting. I can always feel when I need to write a song about something, because something about that process means I have to be truthful. I can’t hide from myself. And I always feel better afterwards, which is a bonus!”

Having begun their journey studying musical theatre, Sinead’s dive into songwriting has become an exploration of the “big feelings” we all experience, especially during lockdowns. With both tracks exploring the complexities of relationships, Sinead reaffirms, “storytelling and lyrics are really important to me as a musician – I think it’s part of growing up as a theatre kid.”

Side B is aptly titled, representing a contrast to the previous release, Side A. Sinead sees this duology as a preview of the sounds and themes to expect on their upcoming album, The Nead Tapes.

“Between the two duologies I wanted to showcase some of the sounds, particularly the variety of sounds to expect on my upcoming album, The Nead Tapes. I also wanted to give a good overview of the types of themes to expect. The whole album is really about mid 20’s panic, the relational breakdowns and break ups, seesawing mental health and just experiencing a quarter life crisis.”

Drawing inspiration from artists like Gretta Ray, who released duologies before her album Begin To Look Around, Sinead aims to provide fans with a unique and connected experience—a journey through the narratives that will unfold in the complete album.

As summer approaches, fans and new listeners alike will be drawn to Side B in various settings. Whether it’s screaming along to ;Tell Me About Europe’ on the way to the beach or sinking into the serene mood of ‘Black And Blue’ on the journey home, these tracks are poised to keep everyone company throughout the summer.

Nead Next Door’s Side B is a testament to the Sinead’s ability to navigate diverse musical landscapes while staying true to their authentic self. As you dive into these tracks, prepare to be captivated by the raw emotion, thoughtful storytelling, and the undeniable charm of this non-binary music sensation.

With the release of Side B, Nead Next Door is undoubtedly marking their place in the music industry—an artist to watch and a soundtrack to cherish.

Listen to Nead Next Door here