"The Future and the Past" is the second full length studio album from American singer-songwriter Natalie Prass, released June 1st, 2018 on the ATO label. The album was produced with Mathew E. White.
At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from critics, the album received an average score of 81, based on 17 reviews, indicating "Universal acclaim ".
Once again partnering with producer Matthew E. White and his Spacebomb House Band, Prass ditches the delicate strings that made her indie famous in favor of muscular funk, disco, and R&B influences that recall everyone from Chic to the Bee Gees. When that works (and it almost always does), it’s irresistible; standout single “Short Court Style” celebrates the hard work of love over rubberband riffs, and “Never Too Late” sparkles like the lost disco classic that the Numero Group was founded to discover. If you’re just looking for a solid explication of the thesis (that, whether organizing political activism or weathering a rocky patch in a relationship, we’re always stronger together), closer “Ain’t Nobody” is an excellent place to start.
The Verdict: This isn’t the album that Natalie Prass intended to write, nor is it the one that most fans of her debut record expected. Faced with the unexpected, Prass evolved, trading inward-facing confessionalism for outward-facing perseverance and releasing one of 2018’s minor masterpieces in the process. Plus, you can most certainly dance to it.
Reviewed by Tyler Clark for consequenceofsound.net.