ALBUM REVIEW: Lucie Silvas – ‘E.G.O.’

Lucie Silvas has had quite the star-studded year, touring with Miranda Lambert and Brothers Osborne. With the release of E.G.O. the outpouring of support she has received on social media, you get a pretty good idea that the album is going to be, let’s say, alright. Yes! It is, E.G.O is fantastic – it is smoky, smouldering and sexy. Coming out of a town like Nashville, where Silvas resides, a country music dominated town, E.G.O. shines and stands out, as a genre-less piece of work, in the best way possible. You can’t really place it and I just love it!

Lucie Silvas has always been one of my favourite voices, and the album opens with a gorgeous vocal performance on the pre-released ‘Kite’. This song immediately captivates you, heightening that thirst for more and the wonder of what is to come. A rather upbeat song with the heavy domination of the drums, the electric guitar solos and breathy vocals that literally dance all over the scale. An awesome number to open with; it’s one of those you can’t help but tap your feet to.

‘Girls From California’ introduces the first of the strings on the record. With the interesting use of harmony and instrumentation, this track is quite the insight to just how artistic this album is set out to be. Written with Natalie Hemby (White Liar, Pontoon) and Liz Rose (Girl Crush, Cry Pretty) this is a song in which you will struggle to find someone, especially women, who won’t empathise with the lyrics.

‘Smoking Your Weed’ is one of my favourite tracks on the album. Bringing out Lucie’s more mischievous and sassy side, this is perhaps the most ‘country-like’ song on the record, with a hint of blues. I mean, when you’ve got a song about weed, you know it’s come to light somewhere in Nashville. ‘You think she’s the girl of your dreams. Well, she’s just smoking your weed.’ In a tongue in cheek, twisted kind of way, this song exudes girl power. It’s refreshing to hear a song where the man is the broken-hearted one for a change.

‘I Want You All To Myself’ is one of the beautiful piano ballads on E.G.O. and it is a true love song. Introducing the gentle electric guitar counter melodies for the chorus and the build of drums in the second verse, you really feel what the song entails, as if you are on the expanding journey of the everlasting love described. No doubt, Lucie’s husband, John, from Brother’s Osborne is playing lead guitar on this track, alongside the deliciously mature lyrics such as ‘cherry on your mouth, wanna taste it?’. The heat on this track is certainly rife.

Another piano ballad like ‘I Want You All To Myself’ is ‘Just For The Record.’ Silvas has in fact released this track before along with ‘My Old Habits’. This song is my favourite on E.G.O. In fact, it has been my favourite Lucie Silvas song since she played it for the first time at C2C last year. This song is so heartbreaking anyway, but the added orchestral strings on the newly released E.G.O. version give that spine-tingling, heart-piercing effect. I couldn’t wait to get to this track to begin with on the album, but when I heard that dramatic but gentle opening, I was completely overjoyed.

Getting an insight into Silvas’ almighty range of influences, her music definitely withholds a timeless, old-style touch.  For example, ‘Everything Looks Beautiful’ adds a hint of jazz to the record. With this song, I picture Silvas way back in the 50’s in a black and white movie, singing this song at a piano in a bar. All the gentleman smoking their cigars completely stunned by this beautiful woman producing this exceptional vocal. On the other hand, you have ‘First Rate Heartbreak’ which has the Beatles-type rocky edge, that has perhaps come from Silvas’ British upbringing, dominated by an immense guitar riff that sounds so familiar to Roy Orbison’s ‘Pretty Woman’. I mean, come on! Awesome!

As mentioned at the beginning, E.G.O. seems to be a genre-less piece of work. Showcasing influences from all eras, genres, musical cultures, Silvas has literally produced a timeless album, it is classic, and in my opinion her best album yet. With the standout vocal, the layers and layers of grungy, intricate guitar riffs that produce the rock star edge to this record, with songs such as title track ‘E.G.O.’. – then the record can immediately take a surprising u-turn to a track like ‘Change Your Mind’ in which you would never expect to hear the vulnerability that Lucie’s lyrics tell. Taking all of this in to account, ‘technically’ E.G.O. is Grammy nomination-worthy. Controversial, I know!

Shannon Hynes
@s_hynesmusic