105.5 The Colorado Sound presents Lydia Loveless with Jason Hawk Harris on Saturday, February 3rd.
Endings are messy. Falling in love is messy. Change is messy. Perhaps, change is the messiest of them all. Especially when eyes are on you; when you blast out of adolescence onto stages across the country, then into your twenties, onto more stages and, finally, into your thirties—all on those same stages. The stages that Lydia Loveless has sung her heart out on, has collapsed on, and laughed on, all mirror the stages of her life thus far for the world to see. When Loveless released her first album over a decade ago, she was still a teenager whose songs of debauchery, guzzling alcohol and doing cocaine were an audio wet dream for a certain type of listener who not only wear their music tastes on their (tattooed) sleeve, but in the lifestyle that they emulate: “outlaw” music with brains – akin to Steve Earle, Drive-By Truckers and Lucinda Williams, vintage country heart with a heartland rock soul.
The time between their late adolescence to now is defined by a shelf full of records, hundreds of thousands of miles on the road, and a ribbon of heartbreaks pockmarking their trail. Loveless is a fiercely brave writer who bluntly assesses their life in song: their struggles with alcohol and depression, and the uncertainty of not only the future, but what piecing together the past will mean for the present.
Nothing’s Gonna Stand in My Way Again musically retains the spirit of Loveless’ previous records, but also moves past the chunky drunk and almost out-of-control riffing of their earliest work. Present here is something more akin to Rumors and Tusk-era Fleetwood Mac—and it works incredibly well. Their voice is more controlled and wiser. Although the subject matter that they are mining is, at times, desolate, they mask it with the smoother production. It’s as beautiful and tragic as a woman crying in the rain, with make-up streaming down her cheeks: at once real and mesmerizing.
Nothing’s Gonna Stand in My Way Again is not only a break-up record drifting back to some of the best of its kind, like Richard & Linda Thompson’s Shoot Out the Lights, Superchunk’s Foolish and of course, Fleetwood Mac’s Rumors, it’s also a reminder to keep improving oneself, taking ownership and moving forward—alone, if needed. Complex and captivating, Nothing’s Gonna Stand In My Way Again is a brave declaration from a person who has survived a lot. Here they lays bare not only their raw pain, but also the strength and resiliency they’ve earned along the way, that only Loveless could hold.