Once country fans digest British-born and Nashville-based songwriter Lucie Silvas‘ new 12 song collection E.G.O., they’ll appreciate a lyrically-strong release that draws from as diverse a palette as albums by Music City’s freest spirits.
Title track “E.G.O.”, short for “Everybody Gets Off,” and the stunning girl-power anthem “Kite” find the singer writing with a purpose. Both sound like pop music while telling meaningful stories that are a far cry from the soulless “poptimism” of country radio.
She also goes the soul-searching route for the socially-aware slow-burner “People Can Change,” the piano and string section pop of “Just For the Record,” the gorgeous and poignant “Change My Mind” and the Burt Bacharach-style ‘60s throwback “Everything Looks Beautiful.”
In between the progressive pop and gentle singer-songwriter ends of the album’s spectrum rests more musically daring material. For instance, “Girls From California” starts like a Western soundtrack cut before turning into a modern soul song with flourishes of pop and Latin influences. It’s part Marty Robbins, part Maren Morris and completely amazing. “Black Jeans” and “My Old Habits” ride similar vibes and should appeal to the country-leaning element of Silvas’ cheering section.
Other outside-the-box compositions include the bluesy, horn-accompanied “Smoking Your Weed” and the rock ‘n’ roll buzzsaw “First Rate Heartbreak.” The only limit, musically-speaking, seems to be the imaginations of Silvas and a talented cast of co-writers that includes Ruston Kelly and Natalie Hemby.
Throughout the album, Silvas captures the appeal of a lot of genre-defiant songwriting giants without sounding like anyone else. The same approach defines artists ranging from Dierks Bentley to Chris Stapleton. Fans of each come away from new music with a real sense of the artists’ musical tastes and values. It’s not just a reflection of what a record exec thinks might make money.
Silvas’ new album arrives Aug. 24 via Furthest Point/Thirty Tigers.
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