In rotation: Lydia Loveless' 'Indestructible Machine'
She’s only been drinking age for a few months, but rural Ohio’s Lydia Loveless has plenty of big opinions on life, love and this here world we live in. Forgive her, however, if they’re cynical and contradictory. “I grew up on whiskey and God, so I’m a little bit confused,” she sings on “Do Right,” one of a handful of incendiary, shoot-first and worry-later takes on the midpoint between country and punk.
“Indestructible Machine,” her second album and first for indie Bloodshot Records, is a rush of roots-rock abrasiveness, existential nerves and knee-jerk anger, all of it delivered in nine songs packed with wayward fiddles and an outpouring of words. Guitars rev, a bass growls and rhythms cause a fuss while Loveless questions anyone with an answer on “Jesus Was a Wino,” and when she offers a ballad such as “How Many Women,” her take on heartache is more exhausted than burned.
Throughout, Loveless doesn’t sound as if she’s singing so much as reacting, tackling each verse as if in constant surprise of her own powerhouse of a voice. Even when she dials back for ballads, the end result is an album that’s splendidly relentless.
Photo courtesy Bloodshot Records