Review: Hello Nimbus by Jamie Beale

Man, if there ever was an album that captured the “Sunday Brunch” good vibes only, then it’s Hello Nimbus from Jamie Beale.

Due out on November 25th, Pretty Vacant One has had the extreme pleasure of getting a sneak listen to this highly contagious and infectious debut album from Jamie Beale.

Hello Nimbus artwork

Hello Nimbus is self-produced by Jamie and engineered by Katie May (The 1975, Harry Styles) from Real World Studios. Written during the fall of the first Covid lockdown Jamie said this of the album,

Essentially it was me trying to remain positive during an absolute rollercoaster of change. Creatively, it gave me such a fresh perspective. I wanted to jump out of my comfort zone and try something I’d never done before, so I toyed with different genres, singing styles and production; I wanted to self-produce a record and play most of the instruments heard on it.  For me it was an experiment to see what my music sounded like when it was almost entirely self-contained, and to try and capture my imagination in audio form without any external influence.

Without further ado, let’s deep dive into Hello Nimbus.

The album kicks off with a 47 second intro, simply called “Intro”, which leads into the first single from the album, the bass driven “Borderline”.

Of course, I am absolutely digging the bass in “Borderline” and it is a song that has grown on me. The more I listen to it, the more I feel like it might become my favourite. The song sets up the easy like Sunday morning pace. I came for the bass and stayed for vibes of the song. It’s bright, bold, and brilliant. Jamie’s vocals compliment the low tones of the bass in a perfect marriage.

“King Godzilla”, the second single from Hello Nimbus, is full of fun and funk and it absolutely satisfies my love for disco bassy funk vibes. It’s full of dirty bass, crunchy guitars, and it’s just downright fun.

The third track from the album is the groovalicious “Champagne People” and let me tell you. I LOVE THE BASS IN THIS SONG. For me, it kinda steals Jamie’s lyrical thunder. The bass is low and tethered in this heavy sadness that just hits me in the gut. The chorus to “Champagne People” is infectious AF. One will catch them humming or singing …”just like always, you got your own way…” or at least I did. The song is described about someone forgetting who they are, where they’ve come from and who their true friends are while pursuing success and fame. Jamie says this of the song,

I guess I can’t help but feel for these people, so I wrote a song about someone who’s trying to climb the social ladder, and ends up alone, hiding behind a pretty picture of how they want their life to look.

Watch the one-shot music video for Champagne People.

Good God all mighty, “Cherry Cola”. Three words that instantly came to my mind when I first listened to this track were bass, jazzy, swagger. The track starts with a guitar riff that just melts into a steady ever perfect beating rhythm of drum and bass. It’s the brush strokes on the drum and bass that give this song a jazzy swagger that I adore. This is a track I found myself revisiting time and time again, picking up on different nuances each time. There is a depth to this song that can be pealed layer by layer. I feel that this song may perhaps capture who Jamie is creatively.

For me, “When it All Comes Down” is the catch your breath point of the album. The track is sort of musically stripped down with Jamie’s lyrics and vocals in the spotlight. It is a quieter moment on the album.

I don’t know what I can say about “The Rain” without sounding like a broken record, but that’s what I like about Hello Nimbus. Consistency. There is a consistent musically chill vibe on the album even if the lyrics are not always chill. If its predecessor is the breathing point of the album, “The Rain” is the second wind of the album that is preparing one to move from Sunday Brunch vibes to all day drinking vibes. The track is chock full of bright slick bass and drumming and opposite of the bright are the heavier feel of the lyrics. It’s a beautiful combo that just works.

I kinda feel that “We Go Back” could musically be the partner to “Borderline”. “We Go Back” gives me the same vibes as the first single. Jamie’s vocals are once again complimented by an infectious bass. And it too, is just as bright and bold as the previous song.

The penultimate track, “Goodbye, Good Luck”, is everyone grabbing their bills/checks and preparing their goodbyes. It’s just Jamie and a bare minimum of musical instruments. It is a quiet and beautiful moment on the album.

Closing out Hello Nimbus is “Charade”. It’s the longest track on the album, clocking in at just under 9 minutes. 8 minutes and 51 seconds to be exact. “Charade” takes the best of all of all the songs before and makes them its own. Which can be dizzying or even choatic, but Jamie has melded the best of his songs into a wonderful and infectious jam. There are moments of quiet, heavy and funky bass, light and bright vocals, and a guitar solo that for me throws me back to the 80’s where the guitarist could show off their skills. The wail of the guitar during this solo is just chef’s kiss. And as the song draws near, if Jamie tells me he is not slightly influenced by Pink Floyd, I’d be shocked as towards the end of the song, I get strong Pink Floyd vibes and again, it all works out. It’s sheer perfection if I must confess.

I am very impressed by Hello Nimbus and Mister Jamie Beale. The album can take centre stage while listening or it can quietly influence the setting while haunting in the background. Hello Nimbus is a mood and a vibe. And it’s a good mood and a good vibe at that. His debut album only indicates more amazing music to follow.

Favourite Track: tie between “King Godzilla” and “Borderline”

Must Listen Tracks: “Cherry Cola” and “Charade”

Listen to the singles below

Follow Jamie at Facebook :: Twitter :: Instagram :: Spotify