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- Release Date 09 September 2016
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Richmond, VA-based songwriter Lucy Dacus is the latest addition to the renowned Matador Records roster. The 21 year old’s critically acclaimed debut album, ‘No Burden’, is released on CD and LP via Matador.
Lucy Dacus's No Burden is full of surprises - sharp lyrical observations, playful turns of musical phrase, hooks that’ll embed themselves in your frontal lobe for days. However, the most surprising thing about this album might be the fact that it's a debut; it has a keen sense of self about it and it nearly glows from the self-possession held by the woman at its core.
Dacus grew up in Richmond; she was adopted at a young age, an experience that informed her curious, openhearted songwriting. “When my parents were explaining what adoption was - which was very early on in my childhood - they always said that my birthmother thought I was worthwhile even though she couldn't be my mom,” she says. “And so from essentially infancy, I was taught that life was innately worthwhile because a bunch of people had worked together to set me up with one.”
Dacus started playing around Richmond while in college, opening for local acts and eventually meeting Jacob Blizard, a guitarist who invited her to make a record for a college project of his. ‘No Burden,’ which originally came out at the start of 2016 on the EggHunt Records label, opens with the forthright, almost brutally honest ‘I Don’t Wanna Be Funny Anymore’, the last song Dacus wrote before the album’s day-long recording session at Starstruck Studios in Nashville. Dacus delivers scalpel-sharp observations about resisting pigeonholing over chunky guitars, ticking off ideals of femininity and youth until the track’s not-quite-resolution.
The rest of ‘No Burden’, which was produced by Collin Pastore, puts Dacus’ voice centre stage, allowing the glinting poetry of her lyrics to shine even more brightly. ‘Trust’, which Dacus wrote in late 2013, showcases her alone with her guitar, her faint vibrato floating over strummed chords as she sings of self-redemption. The diptych ‘Dream State’ and ‘Familiar Place’, which revolve around Dacus repeating “Without you, I am surely the last of our kind / Without you, I am surely the last of my kind,” capture disappointment and loss in a jaw-dropping way; the music trembles around her while her voice stays steady, anticipating whatever might come next.
‘No Burden’ is a forthright, disarmingly catchy statement. While it's a sterling debut it only hints at the potential possessed by this passionate, thoughtful young woman.
- I Don’t Wanna Be Funny Anymore
- Troublemaker, Doppelganger
- Green Eyes, Red Face
- Strange Torpedo
- Dream State
- Map On A Wall
- Direct Address
- Familiar Place