Good Grief Lucius — What an album

By pcsanchez7505

Not since Charlie Brown have the words “good grief” been so cool.

Honest, edgy and always catchy, Lucius, the indie pop band from New York, let loose a whirlwind of emotions in their new album, “Good Grief,” released March 11.

Without lack of candor, “Good Grief” settles into your soul like rain falling from the sky, and when it rains, it pours.

There’s no avoiding the storm or that little tingle down your spine as you listen to the powerful vocals of Jess Wolf and Holly Laessig. Matched with lyrics that leave you wanting more, the album takes a little piece of your heart, yet leaves you feeling profoundly full.

“Good Grief” opens up slowly, building momentum in “Madness.” The song creates a clear and clever dialogue, delving deep into our ever shifting psyche.

“I had a dream where you were standing there with a gun up to my head/ You were asking how it felt.”

Bam … the gun goes off with a slew of words and instrumentals. Lucius goes for the kill, and cocks the hammer yet again to build tension. It’s still building, but we’ve been hit, and hit good.

After the slow and bitter-sweet journey of “Madness,” we slide into “Something About You,” an upbeat song that nicely contrasts the complexity of the first track. There’s nothing complicated about this tune, and it’s easy to understand – we’ve all had the all-consuming feeling of falling for someone.

Lucius keeps us on our toes though, and throws us back into chaos with the next string of songs full of heartache, confusion and questions. But, nearly halfway through the album, we’re given a sweet little treat with “Almost Makes Me Wish For Rain.”

“Almost Makes Me Wish for Rain” starts off with soft vocals and melodic instrumentals. It quickly transforms into something that would give any 80s pop hit a run for its money. Easily one of the best songs on the album, “Almost Makes Me Wish for Rain” packs quite a punch with a melody that makes you want to move and lyrics that remind you even the best of us have bad days.

A few songs down the road, you’ll find “Born Again Teen,” the catchiest song on the album. While other songs build, knowing just when to fall and rise, “Born Again Teen” is a full force frenzy executed with the best control. The chorus is infections, drums are thumping and lyrics ever so enjoyable. The song comes together and falls apart in your hands, leaving nothing but the urge to dance.

In the end, “Good Grief” leaves us on a slower, somber note. “Dusty Trails” reveals the pangs of life and the confusion that follows. Sometimes we lose our way, feel lonely or lost. Even when others say we’ll be OK, it can be hard to believe we’ll feel anything other than an aching in our souls.

“I’m halfway to misery/Some say when you go halfway there’s still plenty of time to return/Oh am I halfway to heaven/Some may say when you go halfway, you only have halfway to go.”

The lyrics in “Dusty Trails” sink right into our primal instincts to shake even the most level-headed individual. It asks the question we all want the answer to — “Will I be OK?”

There’s not much else to say other than “Good Grief” is one hell of an album. Lucius keeps their hand on the trigger through every minute, building tension to give us sweet release. Each song interacts with each other in a cohesive way, and the timing, melodies and vocals intertwine to create something more significant than just an arrangement of tracks.

You know an album is good when it can expand on a deeper level and make us feel more monumental than we probably are. “Good Grief” does just that. It’s an experience, a winding road, sometimes paved and sometimes not. Those willing to take the journey will find themselves better for it. I know I did.

Essential tracks: “Madness” “Almost Makes Me Wish for Rain” “Born Again Teen”

You can buy and listen to more of Lucius’ music here.

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