Released: 25th June 2021
There is something special about home videos – something intrinsically warming and magical. Maybe it is how each grainy clip feels blurred by nostalgia. Whatever that mysticism is, Lucy Dacus has captured it immaculately. On ‘Home Video’, she places the camcorder firmly in your hands. As each track unfolds, it feels as though you are watching Lucy through the lens as she returns to her coming-of-age years.
‘Home Video’ is encompassed by a quivering intimacy, perhaps because, like its title, it captures years of vivid emotion and clung-onto memories. It’s so deeply personal, though, that it feels akin to stepping into her teenage journal. When you are a teenager, you think every feeling you have is the most crushing or euphoric: it’s an unparalleled kind of passion. Lucy has bottled that sheer intensity, but from the perspective of her 26-year-old self, it’s achingly tender.
Woven with specificities and previously unspoken words, each track is made all the more vulnerable by Lucy’s easy, wistful vocals. ‘Partner In Crime’ is a departure from the largely melancholic trajectory of the album – it dabbles in layers of distortion, leaving her voice as warped as the lyrical content as she yearns for some certainty to a frustrating romance. ‘Brando’, meanwhile, is a giddy venture into the heady rush of youthful infatuation. Each track yells cut and opens to a new, completely different scene: it’s as though she is trying on different sounds for size, but each fits perfectly and coordinates with the other.
The album’s closer, ‘Triple Dog Dare’, is mammoth. It begins pensively, laced with vibrant artefacts of a long-ago love – it’s all poetry and passing notes in class. The track soars into ecstasy, brimming with euphoric percussion until its closing minute when the track demands peace once more. In those final minutes, the rush of ‘Home Video’ hits you at once, and it’s a soothing resolution full of relief. “Nothing worse could happen now,” Lucy repeats mantra-like. It’s time to switch the camcorder off.