By Joseph Marcas
Sometimes you need an album that reminds you that the world, and your world, isn’t as bad as you think it is. This was the lesson that Kacey Musgrave learned this year and now she has an album that matches her sweet, dulcet voice, ready to sing about her life in a way that reflects on the bad things without letting it bring you down.
But things have changed for the singer. She has made a quick left turn (a wedding and an acid trip will do that to you) and has now produced one of the best records of the year. Gone is the cynical view of her hometown that most artist adopt once they’ve made it big. Now in its place is reformed outlook on life that tells us that maybe her hometown (and maybe the whole world) isn’t as bad place as we think it is (By the way, her hometown is named Golden if you’re wondering where the album title came from).
So what of the music itself? There are the standard soft piano ballads of “Mother” and “Rainbow” and typical country tracks (banjo and all) of “Love Is A Wild Thing” and “Velvet Elvis” but these songs are only a portion of Musgraves’ cache. There is of course the critical favorite “High Horse”, the standout disco track on the album; the sweet harmonies of “Butterflies”, a record that will have you weak in the knees during those choruses; and the fittingly oddness of “Oh, What A World”, with Musgrave playing around with a vocoder that would make Daft Punk take notice.
Yes, the fan favorite track on this album is “Space Cowboy”, the most epically country song out of all of the others on this record; a complete reinvention of how country relationships are sung about without going off into banality. However, I would ask you to consider “Lonely Weekend”, a track of such potentially depressing lyrics sung over a melody with such airiness and bounce that you will looking forward to your next weekend away from friends. A song and melody so warm that you will feel the sunshine on your skin while sitting indoors with the curtains drawn.