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Mondo Amore

33 customer reviews

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Audio CD, February 8, 2011
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

It s been a tumultuous three years since the release of Nicole
Atkins acclaimed 2007 debut, Neptune City, but the wait has
proved worth it. Mondo Amore is a courageous, provocative work,
fraught with dramatic tension, sweeping emotions, and musical
ambition, with Atkins remarkable voice commanding attention at
the forefront. Daytrotter described Atkins recent session as a
pretty soundtrack to violent waters, which the New Jersey-born
singer/songwriter sees as a spot-on portrayal of the album itself.
On Mondo Amore, Atkins goal was to create a more volatile sound
than she had previously attempted, a sonic approach akin to such
influences as Scott Walker and Nick Cave, while also touching on
longtime inspirations like the blues and classic 60s psychedelic rock.
As its all-encompassing title suggests, Mondo Amore is a big, bold
collection, a grandly romantic song cycle fraught with all the
passion, anger, tenderness and devotion of Atkins own
extraordinary heart.


Darkly laced, almost surrealistic songs and her soaring, dramatically powerful voice. --The New York Times 2/9/11

Nicole Atkins' second album is an exercise in what you might call brunch blues: Dreamy, vaguely melancholic, thoroughly pleasant. The New Jersey-born singer-songwriter has a forceful and unfussy singing style that brings welcome drama to sleepy Fifties throwbacks like "This Is for Love" and rises to a wail on more agitated, roots-rock-inflected numbers like "Vultures" and "You Come to Me." Atkins' lyrics describe insatiable wanderlust and the travails of mixing up with no-good dudes she falls for one on "Cry Cry Cry" and offers others hyperspecific advice on "Hotel Plaster." "Don't shake the change out of your pockets in the boudoir," she instructs. Noted! --Rolling Stone 2/8/11

Nicole Atkins is the kind of classic pop singer who could have been a megastar at any point except the last five years. She has a huge, rangy voice flecked with soul that sounds great atop broken-bottle slide blues ( My Baby Don t Lie ), wine-sloppy piano ballads ( Hotel Plaster ) and even an unexpected stab at X-inspired surf punk ( You Come to Me ). Maybe the handmade breadth and skill of Mondo Amore can catch a commercial slow burn like that of her onetime tourmates the Black Keys. But it s rough out there for a firecracker female singer for whom Auto-Tune is merely what you do to your pink Cadillac every 3,000 miles. Neko Case is probably the best reference point here, and Atkins band nails the same kind of grain-silo reverb and guitar tremolo that give tunes such as This Is for Love their weight. But she s at her best atop the tear-blotted strings of War Is Hell, which give her room to sing for the rafters and bend the song into unexpected chord changes. There isn t a clear standout single, but Mondo is sturdy, well-arranged pop that old crooners and hipster blues brothers alike can claim as theirs.-- August Brown
Nicole Atkins
"Mondo Amore"
Razor & Tie
Two and a half stars (out of four) --The LA Times 2/8/11

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
  1. Vultures 4:12$1.29  Buy MP3 
  2. Cry Cry Cry 3:07$1.29  Buy MP3 
  3. Hotel Plaster 3:38$1.29  Buy MP3 
  4. You Come To Me 3:46$0.99  Buy MP3 
  5. My Baby Don't Lie 2:30$1.29  Buy MP3 
  6. This Is For Love 3:42$0.99  Buy MP3 
  7. You Were The Devil 2:50$1.29  Buy MP3 
  8. War Is Hell 4:30$0.99  Buy MP3 
  9. Heavy Boots 4:47$0.99  Buy MP3 
10. The Tower 5:51$1.29  Buy MP3 

Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 8, 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Razor & Tie
  • ASIN: B004C0SPNI
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #131,291 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By J. McLean on February 27, 2011
Format: Audio CD
I cannot believe the negative reviews of this album on here, especially the 1-star review. I listen to a wide variety of music and Mondo Amore has been a constant in my daily rotation since I bought it over a week ago. These songs are anything but bland and boring. This album is different than Neptune City, but it is far, far better. While I like Neptune City a lot and think it was a strong debut, in my opinion it sometimes borders on being overly poppy/produced (it is saved from this by songs like The Way It Is and Neptune City). Mondo Amore is completely different in tone and is more raw. It is clear from the first song that life was a bit troubled for Nicole while writing this album (Columbia Records and she split, she and her long-term boyfriend split, and her band left her). Lucky for us fans, the emotions that accompany life's tribulations often bring out incredible works of art - and that's exactly what this album is.

Admittedly, it is not as easily accessible and radio-friendly as Neptune City. It is a significant change in tone, but the tone works in the album's favor. These songs are well-crafted, incredibly well-written, and most importantly they are moving. The music is catchy without being bubble-gum, and the lyrics are powerful and beautiful. Atkins has an amazing ability to really give the listener insight into her emotional psyche through music, her unbelievable voice and poignant lyrics. Her music on Mondo Amore makes you really feel something; it gives catharsis without relying on played out cliches or unthoughtful lyrics. These songs blend blues, country and rock qualities and come off as original and rich. The production is also superior to its predecessor and allows Nicole's voice to really shine.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By H3@+h on April 13, 2011
Format: MP3 Music
I remember when I first became a fan of Nicole. I didn't hear her, I saw her. But that's a different review. She was in a band, or fronted it Nicole Atkins and The Sea. That former album Neptune City was more 50's soul-ish. This album has got a blues-rock Americana thing goin' on.

The tracks I'm diggin' most are "You Come To Me" with it's surf vibe. "Hotel Plaster" is a nice piano ballad. "Vultures" is a great lead-off song with a dark rock groove. "My Baby Don't Lie" is a bit country, a bit Stones. "Heavy Boots" builds slowly, and "The Tower" has got some killer solos.

Alot of this album is just basic blues-rock fun. It's not hard to believe she toured with The Black Keys at one point. If only she'd open for me. Oh, and great voice too. Surprised she's not better known.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By B. Massey on April 4, 2011
Format: Audio CD
I heard this playing in a store and was compelled to ask what it was. Then I got it. I've never heard of Nicole Atkins before today, but this just about blew my head off.

Since keyboards have widely replaced instruments and Labels now prefer to manufacture Groups rather than sign them, genuine songs have become rare, and genuine artists even rarer. Without so much corruption in the music industry, perhaps most chart music would be on par with this album. Alas, this is unique, a piece of gold amongst a sea of garbage.

I could meticulously go through the album, saying 'This song is better than that one' etc, which is the case with most albums, but as a whole, musically, it's all excellent.

Nicole's voice is amazing. One of the best I've ever heard. The backing is terrific, real musicians, excellent compositions, first class stuff. The mix is also superb. It all feels very fresh, very original, whilst being musically authentic. Not 'trying' to be new, just being new. I'd like to mention that I got Radiohead's new album a few days ago too (After a lot of anticipation.) Monde Amore blew it apart. If there's justice in the world, this will become hugely popular.

If anyone who worked on the album reads this, I just wanna say thank you. You've restored my faith in music.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Perverted Alchemist on February 2, 2012
Format: Vinyl
When New Jersey native Nicole Atkins released her Columbia Records debut in 2007, it recieved instant praise from music critics. Her album "Neptune City"- which was named after her hometown- was produced by Tore Johnasson (The Cardigans, OK Go, Franz Ferdinand). For as much respect that she was getting for her singing and songwriting, sales were slow and sluggish and promotion was almost non-existent. She left Columbia in 2010 for the indie label Razor & Tie Entertainment, where she would record her sophomore effort. In February 2011, she released the follow-up to "Neptune City" called "Mondo Amore"- which was produced by Atkins and producer Phil Palazzolo. This time around, she ditches the glossy production of her debut for a more rough edged country rock sound on her new album.

Starting off the record is the song "Vultures", which bears an obvious nod to country singer Johnny Cash. She then takes on the southern soul sound of "Cry Cry Cry" where Nicole sings about the heartache over a cheating lover. On the ballad "Hotel Plaster", she sings of reconciliation with a spouse and tries not to listen to a friend about her man on "My Baby Don't Lie". She gets optimistic on the ballad "This Is For Love" and singing about becoming the person she hated on "You Were The Devil". Nicole channels blues rock on the ballad "War Is Hell" and gets writing assistance from former Semisonic frontman Dan Wilson on the song about a tortured lover "Heavy Boots". She closes the album with the song "The Tower" where she sings about the demise of a rocky relationship. Nicole Atkins' "Mondo Amore" shows that she is better in her element when her sound is stripped down and her vocals are given more room to shine. It's one of the few instances where the sophomore album far exceeds the debut and in Atkins' case, she nailed it this time around.
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