In Audiorotic by Niki Gatewood

True Groove Records signee, Phoebe Nir, recently dropped her debut EP, Side Hustle. The Brown University graduate frantically kicks off the endeavor with, “Lust for Life.” Drumming from James “Whoop” Coley becomes Nir’s beating heart.

The EP’s highlight is the unapologetic “Joe!” With lyrics like, “…you were the cause and the cure…,” the listener is left pondering if Joe is actually an unreliable man or stale coffee. A flat “Film School” is unable to build creative momentum.

“Side Hustle,” the title track, is a jazzy little ditty. An attempt to achieve artistic redemption is made. Here, Nir unintentionally proves that her penned lyricism is stronger than her vocal ability. A Disney delivery on “Broken Parts” creates a spoken word atmosphere. It does not elicit much applause.

On “Oh Ana” the warbly vocals, and the folkish strums from a guitar are almost compelling. The optimist would encourage one to encourage Phoebie Nir. She can only get better. Right?

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