Review Summary: A vivid memory reel
Of the three Boygenius members, Lucy Dacus seems destined to end up on top. I recently witnessed her stunning live rendition of “Brando” on Jimmy Kimmel, and that fact became as clear as day. As the contagious thirst for music came pouring out of her – energizing the crowd – it was clear I’d underestimated the Virginia native. With lyrics more grounded than her peers, she crafts tunes anchored down with longevity and less attached to a specific emotion. Rather than getting lost in depression or angst, she’s a natural storyteller who finds the poetry in just about anything – including the poor excuse of poetry by the guy at Church Camp in a Slayer T-shirt. That’s poetic, right?
Proving herself to be a master of reflection, Home Video
plays out like a vivid memory reel with delicate production touches. Infusing gentle indie rock with folk flourishes and the occasional fuzz, her songwriting knows no bounds, but all sounds unmistakably connected. The most powerful snapshots – young love, breaking curfew – are the ones we can all relate to. With her rare, bellowing voice, Dacus measures lofty expectations against reality, providing colorful flashbacks that remind us of our most naïve, carefree days. More focused than the ambitious Historian
, Dacus unleashes these vital recollections through deceptively quiet rock songs. The immense opener “Hot & Heavy” is the best thing she’s ever written without question - a swelling build and irresistible vocal hooks giving it a magnetic quality. It’s also a lyrical mountain; I’ve listened to this beast repeatedly and still feel I’m scratching at its bright surface.
has the odd sense of feeling like a crowd-pleaser while at the same time being an incredibly personal and authentic album that Lucy Dacus made for nobody but herself. It’s all in the details. “Christine” flaunts a breathtaking level of introspection without even nearing the 3-minute mark. Over the soft whisper of a piano, Dacus’ soul-melting voice sets the scene: You’re falling asleep on my shoulder in the back of your boyfriend’s car/We’re coming home from a sermon saying how bent or evil we are.”
It soon becomes clear her feelings for her friend run a bit deeper: I try to imagine what you’re dreaming/You’re muttering nonsense between the steady breathing.
This wasn’t just another car ride for Dacus, but rather one where she felt an unmistakable, vulnerable connection with another woman. I think we’re all more affected by the blooming love of our youth than we’d like to admit; our initial relationships leave lasting scars that diminish but never completely fade. Home Video
is a vibrant, unsparing celebration of life's many chapters and what it means to be human: flaws, doubts and all.