Genre: Alternative Rock
Favorite Tracks: “I Don’t Get Invited To Parties Anymore,” ”Unspoken History,” ”Black RMs”
Alex Lahey has been making music for millennials for a while now, and making music that most of a generation can jam out to is no easy task. Millennials have now fully infiltrated the workforce and navigating that world comes with some new wrinkles for everyone to face, including an ever-changing social structure thanks to the benefits and complications of social media and the fact that our world is literally on fire and on the brink of collapse. But even with those (and plenty of other) roadblocks, we are trying. Alex Lahey knows this, and that is what THE BEST OF LUCK CLUB is about.
Eloquently named, because even if you try your ass off, we all need a little luck too, THE BEST OF LUCK CLUB encapsulates what it means to be in your 20s currently, romanticizing ideas that seem so difficult yet were second nature to previous generations. On the final track, “I Want To Live With You,” she waxes poetic on the thought of living with someone and splitting the rent, something that seems more and more complicated to line up. THE BEST OF LUCK CLUB is filled with a wide range of emotions, and Lahey isn’t afraid to lay into all of them throughout the 10 tracks on the album; she transitions between angst and anger and a more tender and loving approach, and sometimes finds that transition in the same song.
The opening track, “I Don’t Get Invited to Parties Anymore,” is a perfect example of that kind of world building. A perfect song title, before I even hit play I was overcome with a wave of emotion of knowing exactly what that feeling is like. It’s a song about people moving on with or without you, and musically the track doesn’t disappoint. It starts off with her addressing one of her friends that she has grown apart from, and all of it sounds and feels real. One of Lahey’s greatest strengths is her willingness to get deeper and deeper into her real life with her songwriting—she’s got hooks to spare and a sound to take the top off of any building you listen to her in. As she finishes up, layering two different choruses fading in and out of each other, the song has flipped from her talking to her friend to an internal conversation, an internal strife with herself that goes above and beyond to explore on the record. It is a mastery of songwriting.
Every song after that has that same kind of love put into it. She sings much more freely, and this record is more polished than her past records. A song like “Isabella” comes off more effortlessly snappy than anything she has put out previously. The production sounds more like a soft indie rock hit of the mid-2000s than a pop-punk song, her voice guiding it to higher levels. Speaking of her voice, it’s been crafted by the pop-punk gods themselves, powerful, tender, caressing, and unwavering all at once. Those sounds and emotions are interspersed within one another throughout the record, working in harmony to create this magical, chaotic atmosphere that emanates throughout the project. It is so incredibly lived-in and full of life glowing from every part of it.
For as amazing of a debut as I LOVE YOU LIKE A BROTHER was, the stakes feel so much higher here. There’s a global aspect to the record that makes it feel somewhat timeless—someone living in Europe can relate to the millenial pleas that are being presented on this album just as well as someone living in South America or Australia can. It is well noted that she wrote most (if not all) of the record in Nashville, TN, which is about 10,000 miles away from her home in Melbourne. It’s further from home than I think I have been in a long time, and certainly since I’ve been an adult. That kind of homesick seclusion sees her take an overhead look at her situation, and THE BEST OF LUCK CLUB really sees a young and talented artist putting it all together emotionally on the fly.
The main difference between THE BEST OF LUCK CLUB and I LOVE YOU LIKE A BROTHER is that this Lahey seems to be much more forward-facing, where as previously, everything was a retrospective. She feels much more comfortable talking about her views and hopes and the future than she had previously. The trio of songs to close out the album, “I Need To Move On,” “Black RMs,” and “I Want to Live With You,” is a murderers’ row of unfiltered looks into her head as she tries to move forward in her life, an affecting and resonant emotional rollercoaster. She’s come so far as a songwriter since her early EP, and while she’s always been unafraid to write about her insecurities and keep it real with her listeners, THE BEST OF LUCK CLUB sounds more confident and self-assured. It truly is amazing not only seeing a person grow as an artist, but to also see them grow as a person.