My Best Friend Is You is the second studio album by English singer-songwriter Kate Nash, released in the United Kingdom on 19 April 2010 and elsewhere on 20 April. The album was originally entitled Crayon Full Of Colour but the name was changed due to Paolo Nutini's similar song title at that time, "Pencil Full Of Lead". On 13 April 2010, Kate appeared on John Kennedy's XFM show Xposure, where they did a track-by-track interview playing the whole of the album. The album spawned three official singles: the lead single "Do-Wah-Doo" achieved the most commercial success, charting respectively in European countries. "I've Got A Secret" was released as a promotional single and the fourth single overall.
"Do-Wah-Doo" was the first single from the album. Nash confirmed on her blog that she filmed the music video for the single on 18 February 2010; "I shot the video for Do-Wah-Doo last week on Thursday and it was so so much fun! The best fun I ever had on a video shoot. It stars a lot of my wonderful friends who are pretty much amazing. I wrote the treatment almost a year ago, it's a love story set on a plane in the late 50s, for some reason the idea has always been in my head." Nash also posted some pictures of the video shoot, showing her and her friends (including photographer and close friend Wesley Goode, who starred in Nash's video for "Pumpkin Soup") on a plane. The music video was available from 4 March 2010. The single charted at number 15 on the UK Singles Chart and number 36 in Ireland. The single also received a considerable amount of chart success in European countries such as Belgium and Germany.
"Kiss That Grrrl" was the second single release. It follows the 60s-girlband theme that her recent singles have had, and nods to Nash's fondness to girl groups such as the Shirelles, the Chiffons and the Ronettes. It is also a reference to the riot grrrl scene of the early 1990s. The song received mixed reviews and the music video received generally negative reviews from critics. It was a commercial failure, charting just outside the top 200 on the UK Singles Chart.
"Later On" was confirmed as the third single by Nash on her Facebook page, stating that she had filmed the video and thought it might be the best video yet. It was released on 18 October 2010 and promoted mainly through her UK tour on the week of the singles release.
"I've Got a Secret" was issued as the fourth and final single from My Best Friend Is You, confirmed by Nash on her My Ignorant Youth blog. Nash stated that a physical vinyl single would be available, like "Later On", through the second leg of her UK tour, which began on 20 March 2011, entitled the After-School Club Tour. The single contains the b-side "Kate & Breasts Intro Duck Ton Song Tour 2010".
"I Just Love You More" was made available on Nash's official website for free digital download. The song was previewed on radio station XFM, on which it received a mostly positive reaction from listeners.
A demo version of "Don't You Want to Share the Guilt?" appeared as a B-side on the single "Merry Happy" from the previous album Made of Bricks.
"I Hate Seagulls" and "Pickpocket" were both played at intimate venues in 2008 while Kate was still promoting the previous album. They were posted on YouTube and received many views before being confirmed as new tracks for the album.
The album was generally met with positive reviews from critics. At Metacritic, a review aggregator which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 69, which indicates "generally favorable reviews".Allmusic granted the album 3 stars out of 5, noting it sounded "professional" and compared the album's sound with Amy Winehouse's, yet also commented "the aim of much of [My Best Friend Is You] seems to be simply getting Kate Nash airplay without worrying overly much about a musical backing that suits her songwriting." Andrzej Lukowski of Drowned in Sound denotes confusion on the album sounding "both indie and universal" and called the album "rather daring" for a "mainstream album".The Guardian granted four out of five stars, praising Nash' growth as an artist. The Irish Times named the album their "Album of the Week" and called it "a considerable step from its predecessor".
The official artwork for the sleeve leaked on 17 March 2010 appearing first on Kuwaiti music blog Loft965.com.
On 9 April 2010, Nash took part in a timesonline.co.uk web chat. When asked a question about the album's artwork she replied:
"It's been pretty stressful getting all the artwork together on this album because I've cared so much about it and had so many ideas and wanted it to be perfect for my second record. I worked with a lady called Kate Gibb who does screen printing, we screen printed a bunch of photos and some of my own objects to create collages inspired by images that I collected and loved, they varied from the bauhaus art movement to punk and lo fi record covers because I love the simplicity in those. I've just got through all the final artwork and it was worth the hardwork because I love how it looks. I try to be as involved as possible in every single aspect of what I do so that it represents me properly and because it's fun and I care and I'm a control freak."
Jay Malhotra – bass on tracks 2, 3, 6 and 7; guitar on tracks 4, 7 and 10; glockenspiel and ukelele on track 3; production, engineering and mixing on track 8
Bernard Butler – synthesizers on 4, 9, 10 and 11; bass on tracks 1, 5 and 9; bongos on tracks 5 and 10; organ on tracks 5 and 12; acoustic guitar on track 5; production, engineering and mixing on all tracks except 8 and 9
Elliott Andrews – drums on all tracks except 8, 9 and 14
Brett Alaimo – guitar on tracks 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7
Ian Burdge – cello on tracks 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 11 and 13
Jon Jackson – guitar on tracks 2, 6 and 7; bass on tracks 4 and 10
The album charted respectively at number 8 and 26 on the UK Album Chart and the Irish Albums Chart in its first week, however quickly dropped in its second week to number 39 and 40. It charted at number 62 on the Billboard 200 and number 6 in the German Album Charts.