Growing up on a farm in a small town, there wasn’t much to do but make music for this 20-year-old Columbus, OH, native. Lydia Loveless commands the mix with her striking voice, accompanied by her rhythm guitar playing and backing band that perform fast-paced outlaw country, and folk originals.

Guitars, banjo and drums rip through the first track on “Bad Way To Go,” accompanied by Lydia’s unruly yet beautiful southern twang. Open chords bring the listener in with rumbling drums bouncing around in “Can’t Change Me.” Meanwhile, we capture the singer’s vulnerable side in “More Like Them,” as Loveless sings about losing love and being okay with it right from the start.

The track “How Many Women” could very well be a Dolly Parton song, with lyrics that linger in your head as Loveless sings, “How many women does a man need?/ How many does it take to make him happy?/ How many hearts will he break?/ How much time will he waste?”

The lighthearted “Steve Earl” is just plain fun and humorous, as she sings about the infamous singer-songwriter from Texas, known for his political activism on stage.

Towards the end of the record, “Do Right” is full raucous outlaw rebellion that makes you want to raise your glass of whiskey and square dance with anyone you can grab at the local dive. Complimenting the very last song, “Crazy,” are violins and fast-strumming guitars as Lydia sings about waking up the next day dealing with a monstrous hangover from a night of partying, trying to fix a mess.

The songstress has got a lot to say and says it all in this timeless body of work. She spills her guts out on the floor as she writes about her hatred of men, her minor binge drinking problem and she has enough balls to write a song about anyone who pisses her off.

In A Word: Exceptional

 

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