Shirley Teteh A.K.A Nardeydey further reveals the depths of her music-making abilities with her debut single Speedial. Playing guitar for emerging London-based jazz bands, Nérijia and Maisha, it is exciting to hear yet another key player from the capital’s scene turning their talents to creating music outside of the tradition. Speedial has been described as leaning more towards alt-pop and post-punk than jazz, with its catchy sweet melodic lines and polyrhythms. Teteh’s jazz influences are still present in the sound, especially in the voicings of the descending bass which support the madness of the music: the pounding congas and automated percussion, the sudden rising synths and her elusive lyrics.
According to Lucky Number - the record company supporting the release - the narrative of the song references Laurel Canyon; a magical part of California which was home to musical legends in the 60s & 70s such as Carole King and Neil Young. The track can be easily placed within such a world. Its essence seems to be seeking the unattainable within relationships with others and ourselves as life matures, all dusted with a touch of scepticism: “we grow up when we get to throw the bed sheets away, not a day before that”. Perhaps Speedial hints towards Teteh’s new found alias as Nardeydey being the next wandering song writer of our time such as the creatives who passed through Laurel Canyon. We can only hope for more.