Review: Lucy Dacus sings about young love and friendships

Lucy Dacus, “Home Video” (Matador)

This is what the world of teenagers sounds like — intense, earnest, funny and sometimes beautiful.

On “Home Video,” 26-year-old Lucy Dacus revisits her adolescence, and in this case, intimate introspection makes for moving music. She shares recollections in a casually conversational style, writing mostly in the second person with an appealing specificity about young love and friendships.

“You told me to skip school to go with you to the movies,” goes the opening couplet on “Brando.” “You knew you were uncool, but you thought you could fool me.” Elsewhere Dacus sings about vacation Bible school, murder fantasy and forbidden love.

Like the lyrics to “Brando,” Dacus’ arrangements are cinematic, with a soft focus framing her honest alto. She goes for washes of synthesizers, strummed acoustic guitars and gauzy harmonies. The pretty pleas on the breakup ballad “Please Stay” benefit from the vocal assistance of Dacus’ boygenius bandmates, Phoebe Bridgers and Julien Baker.

Dacus smartly varies the dynamics, opting at times for big drums and bass, and even Slayer-style electric guitar. Because every adolescence should include some Slayer.

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