Album Club Mar/Apr Review: Indestructible Machine, by Lydia Loveless

I’m not sure what happened to the good momentum of The Musical Bum Club last month – I didn’t see an April selection, but we were just coming back from vacation, so I know a lot of things fell through the cracks.

Anyway, regardless of whether we have more new music to review and discuss, I declare the effort a success for the sole reason that it has brought singer-songwriter Lydia Loveless into my auditory universe.

March’s album selection was Loveless’ debut effort, Indestructible Machine. I have to say that for someone who was under 21 when the album was recorded, there are an awful lot of songs about drinking to excess. Though now that I stop and consider my own late teen behavior, perhaps not. And don’t we all think we’re indestructible when we’re teens?

Indestructible Machine

I hadn’t heard of Lydia before and when I heard her name, I thought she was country crooner Patty Loveless’ daughter or something. This is incorrect – Lydia hails from Columbus OH (not what I think of as a country music bastion), but has channeled a raw country, tonk sound that certainly is a really good time.

Loveless’ hard-edged voice does great service on what I like to think of as the “Angry Girl” songs: Bad Way To Go, Do Right, and my favorite song on the record: Can’t Change Me. This song also includes the lyric that I’ve decided is my new mantra for 2012:

It looks like only whiskey’s gonna kick my ass and make me still come back.

The album isn’t all angry though – Lydia does a good softer turn on the excellent Crazy (though it’s not the Patsy Cline Crazy that probably comes to mind when you hear the title), and I love the very goofy “stalking” song Steve Earle, in which the famous musician can’t stop trailing in Lydia’s wake. I think that the overtly twangy How Many Women is probably the only real misstep on the album for me.

Superb selection from Jay, and I’m looking forward to hearing what she releases in the future.

8 whiskey shots out of 10.

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