Lizzie Loveless : You Don’t Know

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Lizzie Loveless You Don't Know review

So don’t put your arms around me / If all you’re gonna do is say goodbye,” sings Lizzie Lieberson on the opening title track of her debut album as Lizzie Loveless, You Don’t Know. In these two lines, Loveless lays her mission statement on the table. Its ethos is one of loyalty and patience, showing kindness even when times are rough. Throughout You Don’t Know, Loveless opens up about her experiences with heartbreak and healthcare, all through an accessible, optimistic lens. It gleams quiet psych folk in the vein of Kacey Musgraves’ “Oh What a World” and Bedouine’s “Dizzy.”

“The Joke” examines Loveless’ breaking point with a health battle while on tour with her band TEEN. Loveless says of the experience, “I had to come home and face it. I was living with something that was out of my control. It occupied my every waking moment. This was the tipping point and my body was demanding me to pay attention.” The track serves a cathartic purpose, pushing out the frustration and hopelessness that can come with struggling with your own physiology. While there’s a feeling of loneliness in having to go through it, it can also pull us closer to our loved ones, and Loveless felt the experience brought her closer to her partner. It’s an intense moment of honesty, and her openness is enhanced by the track’s beautiful, twinkling guitar riff and tender vocals.

Whether on the more dance-inspired, Robyn-esque tracks like “Loveless” or the slower, mellowed “Memory,” Loveless provokes a deeper reflection on each song. On “Memory,” Loveless wonders where love goes when a relationship ends, singing, “Where does it go/ Do you reabsorb each vessel with some remainder of love?” It’s a heart wrenching statement, forcing a look back at past lovers and the memories that accompany such reflection. “Loveless” is a transmission from the other end of that spectrum, exploring the restlessness and anxiety that comes with a new love. Loveless sings, “I am drowning in a dream / I can’t sleep  / It is all too much for me.” 

By blending swirling, otherworldly keys and synths with her entrancing, whisper-like vocals, Loveless creates a landscape all her own, running wild with her first opportunity to create solely on her own. Bringing to mind soft rock influences like Jewel and Natalie Imbruglia with the instrumental tendencies of Cate Le Bon, Loveless charts her own artistic path, pulling her nine years in the field with TEEN in to elevate this debut work that’s all her own. As she sings on “Eyes of a Man,” “I don’t need you / I’ll choose me instead.”

Label: EggHunt

Year: 2021

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