Lydia Loveless: Indestructible

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Singer-songwriter Lydia Loveless debuts her new album this week on Bloodshot Records, an alt-country/Americana label that boasts an all-star line up, featuring Justin Townes Earle, Ben Kweller and The Bottle Rockets. At age 21, she is the youngest artist on the roster.

Loveless grew up on a farm outside of Coshocton, Ohio and moved to Columbus as a teenager. Her new release, Indestructible Machine, is an amalgam of her influences, from the country music played in her father's bar to the punk rock scene of her teenage years.

Critics often mention Neko Case's name when describing Loveless' vocals, as well the name of her label-mate, Exene Cervenka (formerly of the country-punk band, X). A review on states, "She has a big throaty voice that recalls Neko Case, but Loveless' is bigger, richer, more expressive…her singing owes more to [Loretta] Lynn and Jeannie C. Reilly." Twangville's review also drops Loretta's name calling Loveless the "heir apparent" to the country legend.

Most of the country songs on the new project are delivered with a thrashy, punk attitude and are generously laced with cuss words and references to booze and drug use. On the radio advance copy of the CD, six of the nine tracks earned an FCC warning. The cover art is a drawing of her sitting between two wagon wheels, chugging out of a gas can. It seems as if she has done some hard living in those 21 years (with no plans to go to rehab).

In support of Indestructible Machine, Loveless hits the road hard this month and next, touring extensively throughout her home state of Ohio, down south and back across the midwest to San Francisco and Los Angeles. She'll be performing with her band at the Union Bar and Grill in Athens, Ohio on Sept. 21.

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