After finishing for the day in her Nashville studio, Alex Lahey spent her evenings descending downwards into dive bars, past peeling posters of ‘60s rock bands. The walls were adorned in salubrious red, the leather upholstery shaped by the backsides of regulars who rarely leave for home. Rather than be intimated by the clientele, Lahey instead struck up conversations. Out of these somewhat debauched encounters, she created something gold and shiny.
‘The Best Of Luck Club’ – the Australian’s sophomore record – is an unashamed collection of maximalist glam-rock. The freedom Nashville’s dive bar scene granted Lahey shines gloriously from each of its well-worn corners. These are places with no judgement, where anonymous visitors have no history and the chance to be whoever they want to be. That sense of liberty left the Melbourne multi-instrumentalist – drums are the only thing she doesn’t play on the record – emboldened. She gave absolutely zero f***s when it came to making ‘The Best Of Luck Club’, and the results are dazzling.
Lahey reclaimed her childhood saxophone for the project, and its strung-out notes at the end of glam-rock banger ‘Don’t Be So hard of Yourself’ symbolise the decadent excess of ‘The Best of Luck Club.’ It’s overflowing with arena-ready choruses, shameless licks of the guitar and heart-warmingly candid lyrics. “Let’s combine all our books and records and forget what belongs to who,” she sings on closer ‘I Want To Live With You’.
The album has immense scale, wonderfully indulgent soundscapes and limitless sing-alongs. Not all the songs come with huge choruses, though: ‘Misery Guts’ sees Lahey frantically spit over a post-punk riff that could’ve been pulled straight from Arctic Monkeys’ debut, while piano-led ballad ‘Unspoken History’ is aimless, leaving the listener in a state of flux. But putting these anomalies aside, ‘The Best of Luck Club’ quite simply kicks ass.
Words: Paddy Kinsella
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