It's a shame that fame didn't come to Nicolette after her two dreamy songs on Massive Attack's Protection, "Three" and "Sly." Considered a dance diva for intellectuals, Nicolette has won a cult following in Europe, and a few brave Americans have discovered her fine second album Let No One Live Rent Fee in Your Head, a multi-textured dance/trip-hop/jazz album with several tracks produced by UK electromeisters Plaid.
But as for her debut? Now Is Early is a lovely album, with lots of catchy beats and offbeat electronic grooves (though minus the involvement of Plaid). It's not quite as mature as Rent Free, but it still sparkles with eccentricity, warmth, and Nicolette's inarguably effervescent personality. The second track, "Dove Song," is the only dud in this album, with a rather headache-inducing rhythm that goes on for 5 minutes. But even it can't dispel the magic of Nicolette's childlike, yet worldly, voice.
Needless to say, this album will also have you tapping your feet, nodding your head, even occasionally getting up to shake your money maker. Support the lady!