Sometimes the output of “supergroups” can seem like the throwaway songs that the members aren’t saving for a solo album. And some songs feel like a solo song with some overdubbed harmonies. “Not Strong Enough” actually sounds like a real collaboration with all three members of boygenius trading off lead vocals, and the video confirms that these artists truly enjoy being together.
Phoebe Bridgers told Rolling Stone that the title is a nod to Sheryl Crow’s “Strong Enough.”
“The two wolves inside us can be self-hatred and self-aggrandizing. Being like, ‘I’m not strong enough to show up for you. I can’t be the partner that you want me to be.’ But also being like, ‘I’m too fucked up. I’m unknowable in some deep way!’ Self-hatred is a god complex sometimes, where you think you’re the most fucked-up person who’s ever lived. Straight up, you’re not. And it can make people behave really selfishly, and I love each of our interpretations of that concept.”
My favorite moment of the video is when they’re on the rollercoaster and Julien Baker looks like she’s about to hurl. She’s trying so hard to smile and look like she’s having fun but you can totally tell she’s hating it.
Directed by Mara Palena. Single out now on Matador. 7-inch due June 3.
It tells you how strong last year’s Home Video was if “Kissing Lessons” was left off of it.
I asked her how to win my man
and she said, “I know just the thing.”
Gave me lipgloss and a hair toss
and, after school, a lesson in kissing.
In the video our hero hangs out in her room, playing her Gameboy and reading Judy Blume, dancing with her Discman, blowing bubbles and playing dress up. Dacus has made no secret that this series of songs is autobiographical, and in under two minutes she creates a perfect short story of a song. It has all the narrative qualities of great literature and — like the relationship it depicts — it’s over way too soon.
“Kissing Lessons” b/w “Thumbs Again” will be released as a 7” on June 3.
Directed by Marin Leong. From Home Video, out June 25 on Matador.
In the summer of ’07 Lucy Dacus was twelve years old. “VBS” tells the story of going to a sleepover church camp where she meets and ultimately falls for another camper. This other camper is one of those beautifully damaged, tragic characters that that seem so attractive when we are young.
I’m more than twenty years older than Lucy Dacus so maybe things have changed but when I attended vacation bible school it was just a drop-off thing for elementary school-aged kids where we painted little clay signs that said “Joy!” on them. One year I made a needlepoint thing that said “JESUS” but inverted so you had to “find Jesus” in it. It lived on a wall in our kitchen for decades. I did a little googling and found one just like it.
Happy to see that people are still out there helping people find Jesus via cross-stitched optical illusions.
Anyway, there was no snorting nutmeg or blasting Slayer at VBS back in my day!
Directed by Lucy Dacus and Marin Leong. From Home Video, out June 25 on Matador.
A powerful new song by the great Lucy Dacus with a video featuring adorable old home movies. Home Video, not coincidentally, is the title of her upcoming album.
“I thought I was writing ‘Hot & Heavy’ about an old friend, but I realized along the way that it was just about me outgrowing past versions of myself,” explains Dacus. “So much of life is submitting to change and saying goodbye even if you don’t want to. Now whenever I go to places that used to be significant to me, it feels like trespassing the past. I know that the teen version of me wouldn’t approve of me now, and that’s embarrassing and a little bit heartbreaking, even if I know intellectually that I like my life and who I am.”
“I knew I wanted to include some of the home video footage that my dad took of me while I was growing up. I wanted to visualize the moment when you first reflect on your childhood, which I think can also be the moment that childhood is over. For me, I feel like there was a hard switch when I started releasing music, when my identity went from being a personal project to something publicly observed and reflected. I asked my family (shoutout to my grandma) and some of my closest friends to be extras because they’re the people that knew me before that switch. I may have dropped out of film school, but I still love making movies and had a really fun time directing this one.”
“Can you imagine what it’s like to be here with you now?” Lucy Dacus’ voice makes you want to imagine. She sounds cool, but you can tell she cares.
By the time “Addictions” gets to its first hook (“Now I’m awake at 2am / Without a cause to draw you in”) it’s got you. It builds and builds, adding horns and crunchy guitars, and then it ends. Leaving you wanting more.