There's no place like home. Though, for 26-year-old indie star Lucy Dacus, who shot to fame after the successes of both 2016's No Burden and 2018's Historian, home has become more of a symbolic pursuit than an actual physical place. On her third album, Home Video, Dacus turns back the hands of time and returns to her roots as she chronicles the bittersweet tales of growing up in Richmond, VA.
The album is a starkly honest and unabashed look at what it means to find your footing, fall in love and forge your own path.
Appropriately enough, in a time where we’ve all been forced into a period of reflection, Lucy Dacus‘ third album takes her early years growing up in Virginia as inspiration. Home Video is formed of 11 stories based on her childhood diaries – tales of religious youth camps, cinephile boyfriends and estranged fathers all feature in Dacus’ lyrics. Home Video is also Dacus’ most immediate, accessible album to date.
Whether your generation's story of self-sacrifice revolves around kid's books such as The Rainbow Fish and The Giving Tree, or Jesus Christ himself, Lucy Dacus gives us so much of herself on her third album, Home Video, that it's a wonder there is anything but a steaming husk of herself left at the end. Having recently migrated away from her childhood home of Richmond, Virginia, Dacus, aided by primary collaborator Jacob Blizard, picks apart her pre-teen and not-so-far beyond years with her typically strong-eyed attention to detail. In alternating roles of prey ("Partner in Crime"), protector ("Thumbs," "Christine"), and tongue-in-cheek predator ("First Time," "Triple Dog Dare"), Dacus recounts the formative days and relationships that shaped her.
A vivid memory reel
Of the three Boygenius members, Lucy Dacus seems destined to end up on top. I recently witnessed her stunning live rendition of "Brando" on Jimmy Kimmel, and that fact became as clear as day. As the contagious thirst for music came pouring out of her - energizing the crowd - it was clear I'd underestimated the Virginia native. With lyrics more grounded than her peers, she crafts tunes anchored down with longevity and less attached to a specific emotion.
Lucy Dacus' third album, Home Video, explores a slice of 2000s Christian youth culture from the perspective of a girl who lived through it. It was a time when kids had newfound access to prurient websites, movies, and music through the internet. Church leaders enforced rigid rules about anything a young girl might read, watch, or listen to. In a recent interview with Esquire, Dacus recalls a pastor who forced her to delete every secular song on her iPod.
Bible camp boyfriends, sneaking out of the house, beautiful friendships, terrible friendships, closeted queerness - this is Lucy Dacus re-examining her adolescence and she's not shying away from the sad bits. 'Home Video' is the 26-year-old American's third solo album and it's an emotional exploration of her youth. Her cutting lyrics combine the vividness of teenage experiences with Dacus' adult reflections on them.