October 8, 2014

LP: Cayetana - Nervous Like Me

Nervous Like Me embodies a necessary radical exuberance.

I've been listening to Nervous Like Me while driving through the middle of nowhere, missing late afternoons two falls ago when I'd hang out in the mountains, drinking champagne with my best friends. I've been listening to Nervous Like Me while trying on a new black shirt printed with red hearts, stars, bows, and lips, loving how I look for the first time in forever. I've been listening to Nervous Like Me while working on poems and sending them to friends and feeling confident and excited.

 Earlier this year, I saw Cayetana play the most perfect show with All Dogs and Waxahatchee. Ever since then, I've been obsessed with their demos and dying to hear more songs. Nervous Like Me is Cayetana's debut LP and I'm hearing it at a point of renewal. I no longer feel like I'm living at the bottom of the well, and instead I feel ceaselessly in love, and I can't imagine a more perfect soundtrack than the bighearted pop punk of Nervous Like Me. Each song rides on a kind of euphoric and empowering energy that resonates endlessly, reminding me of the power of creative friendships as well as the power of personal positivity. On "Dirty Laundry," Augusta Koch sings, "It's funny the things we find comfort in, it's funny the things that make us feel again," and I find myself relating to that line all the time. I think about talking to one of my best friends on the phone for an hour and baking a good batch cookies and learning to read tarot cards and how, in a way, all of those things have made me feel again.

Cayetana constantly remind me to embrace every weird feeling from confusion to regret to nostalgia, and to find a little bit of inspiration at the heart of every disappointment. I've wanted to believe in this kind of thing all year, and now I finally feel like it's really true, especially when I'm listening and singing along to Nervous Like Me. I think there's a point of connection in every song on the album, and I can't help but take this album super personally. "Mountain Kids" reminds me of reconsidering a relationship over a bottle of white wine. "Hot Dad Calendar" reminds me of all the times I've jokingly described myself as a trainwreck. "Madame B" reminds me of reading tarot in my favorite bar on karaoke night a few weeks ago. And "Busy Brain" contains my new mantra: "I don't wanna change for the world, I want the world to change for me, I don't wanna change for the world 'cause I feel it differently." For me, that's about taking care of yourself and believing in yourself and advocating for yourself. I'm still figuring out how to live and work on those things all the time, and there're still a million things I don't understand, but I'm feeling great, and Nervous Like Me embodies a kind of radical exuberance that keeps me going.


Listen to Cayetana on bandcamp.

Caroline Rayner, who likes getting tattoos and cutting up old magazines and driving long distances and baking cookies. She also writes things for Tiny Mix Tapes and, when she remembers, her blog.