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"The Envelope, Please...2001's Best Local Albums"

Any people who can cover punk and soul standards with equal conviction and inspiration (Johnny Thunders’s " Can’t Put Your Arms around a Memory " and William Bell’s " You Don’t Miss Your Water, " respectively) have got something going for them. The roots-rocking Lucky 57 have something and then some. The beautifully bleeding lap steel guitars and stumble-drunk Telecasters (they sure as hell sound like Telecasters, anyway) only begin to tell the story. When she’s not drivin’ and cryin’ with faraway eyes, dusky-voiced Kip McCloud torch-sings some of the coolest C&W ditties north of the Mason-Dixon line. - Boston Phoenix

"Top 10 for 2001"

Guitar driven roots rock the way it should be. How far off can a band be with a slew of fantastic originals and covers of Gram Parsons and Johnny Thunders?!
- Miles of Music

"Live in NYC This Week" of the best neocountry album's we've heard in awhile...And we're totally in luv with McCloud's fabulous voice. Think k.d. lang's without the annoying mannerisms and with much better songs - TimeOut NY

"Jangly & Twangy"

Jangly 'n' twangy describes this Boston outfit's irresistibly catchy sound. But it's the way Kip McCloud wraps her boyish voice around lyrics of fed-up loss that gives this effort heft. - LA Daily News

"Lucky 57 Stands Out from the Pack"

There are a million roots rock/ bands out there right now, so it takes something special to stand out from the pack. New England's Lucky 57 has that something in the person of frontwoman Kip McCloud... her world-weary voice relates tales of hearts won, lost and smashed to powder in a tone that could only sound that sanded down because of experience...supported by a band that navigates the fine line between rock and country as skillfully as any in recent memory; the quintet's no-frills arrangements may lack radio-ready polish, but they more than make up for it with pure soul.
- High Bias

"Almost Famous...Boston Bands to Watch Out For"

Like the 'Beggars Banquet'-era Rolling Stones, Replacements, and X (in their Knitters incarnation), the rootsy quintet fuses an instinctive feel for lap steel-soaked country blues with a whiskey-cured app reciation for old fashioned rock'n'roll...with the exception of McCloud's burnished, molasses-rich voice, it's the sound of guitars-mournful, dirty, ragged... - Boston Globe

"Roots Music in Providence"

McCloud's dusky near-drawl drives an amalgam oftwangy pop and simmering country-style ballads.
- The Providence Journal

"Review: "Lovely Melancholy""

Every song on this disc has a clever lyrical and melodic hook and the production (by the band and David Minehan) is top notch. This is a fantastic driving disc...
- Freight Train Boogie

"Review: "Lovely Melancholy""

...marries twang to pop melodies...[and] carries it off with near perfection.
- Ink 19

"Review: "Lovely Melancholy""

Since starting to write for Rockzillaworld I've been amazed at the geographic diversity of the artists recording the music we focus on, alternative country, bluegrass, and twangy roots-rock. Thriving music scenes with an abundance of quality acts in the cities of Texas, throughout North Carolina, and the flourishing alternative that coexists with Nashville's mainstream were no surprise. But this music isn't just a southern thing. My adopted hometown of Minneapolis has a long history of strong folk and roots-rock music communities, but I've discovered it also has an abundance of bluegrass bands. The diversity of bands in all genres based in Ohio has been an eye opener too.

But the biggest shocker has been New England. Rockzillaworld has reviewed discs by Amber Casares, Mary Gauthier, and the Stumbleweeds from the Boston area, which appears to be the center of the New England music scene. Hellcountry, a monthly showcase for regional and national twang acts in Cambridge (a Boston suburb) is in its fifth year and still going strong. But it isn't limited to Boston. Say Zuzu are from New Hampshire. Two compilations (Area Code 207 - volume 1 and volume 2) highlight alt-country acts from Maine (including Slaid Cleaves, a Maine native now living in Austin). Add to this list Boston's Lucky 57.

The disc starts with "Sips of Wine, Coffee Chaser," co-written by Lucky 57 frontwoman Kip McCloud and Tinker Lee Taylor. While not participating as a musician, Taylor wrote three of the nine Lonesome Melancholy cuts in addition to this co-write. In the opener they combine short, pithy lines on an archetypical country music theme with accompaniment that works the fence between the drive of roots-rock and the twang of country.

Takin' a stroll
You're going downtown tonight
Got a fever in you
Head to toe
So kick it - kick it out
Sips of wine coffee chaser
Few more sips
Memory eraser
Goin' bliind
Tryin' to replace her
Breakin down
All along the way

In addition to McCloud on vocals, guitar, accordion, and harmonica, Lucky 57 is Sue Metro on lap steel, bassist Lil' Phil Magnifico, drummer Todd Foulsham, and guitarist Rustle Chud. Like the majority of songs, several of the tunes on Lovely Melancholy are about love gone bad, love gone good, or just being in love. Magnifico and Chud also help out on vocals, Chud taking the lead on "Lee's World," a song he wrote about love gone bad. His friend Lee "ran away from Dawson in her time of endless lying." Now "Lee's world is goin' to pieces" and he thinks he "may be the next in line." What I found intriguing about this song is that it became more ambiguous over time. After a cursory listen you think you've got a handle on what it's all about. Lee's without a man, isn't handling it well, and the singer thinks (maybe hopes) he'll be there to pickup the pieces. Can't be any simpler than that. Then you realize that Lee thinks everything is fine, or so she claims. Maybe it is. The chance that the narrator is only hoping that Lee's "falling apart" is another possibility. Or maybe Lee does have her sights set on him and he doesn't want the friendship to end, but doesn't want to gamble that he won't suffer the same fate as the last guy. Pretty soon you've got a myriad of possible scenarios, all of which fit the lyrics. Take your pick.

"Never Quite Good Enough Blues" isn't explicitly about love (although it could be). It's much more generic, fitting almost any situation of self-doubt or depression.

Never would tell you what is wrong
Never would say you did it right Just sort of keeps you stringin' along
Singin' those never quite good enough blues

Taylor continues working through depression in song with "Busted Up & Blue," the lyrical source for the disc's title.

Woke up this morning
Didn't wanna get outta bed
Lovely melancholy
Conjured up inside my head
You turn to me and say
C'mon let's both stay home
I tell you then and there
That's exactly what I wantYou know I'm busted up & blue

Lucky 57 include two cover songs on Lovely Melancholy. The first is William Bell's country-soul classic "You Don't Miss Your Water," probably best known from the Byrds version on the Sweetheart of the Rodeo disc. Also getting a fresh interpretation by Lucky 57 is New York Doll Johnny Thunders' "Can't Put Your Arms Around a Memory." These covers illustrate the breadth of Lucky 57's sound, spanning rock and country as do a lot of the alternative country and Americana artists we cover at Rockzillaworld. I was most impressed with Luck 57's'ability to blend these genres. Where most acts have a bias - Rockzillaworld


"Lovely Melancholy" (Loosground Records, 2001) 10-song CD

Catamount Records AMA HUAC Compilation, Fall 2003, 2004


Feeling a bit camera shy


"one of the best roots rock albums we've heard in awhile." -- TimeOut NY

"Guitar driven roots rock the way it should be. How far off can a band be with a slew of fantastic originals and covers of Gram Parsons and Johnny Thunders?!" -- Miles of Music

"Jangly 'n' twangy describes this Boston outfit's irresistibly catchy sound. But it's the way Kip McCloud wraps her boyish voice around lyrics of fed-up loss that gives this effort heft." -- LA Daily News

"beautifully bleeding lap steel guitars and stumble-drunk Telecasters only begin to tell the story…" – Stuff at Night, Boston

It this band were from Austin instead of Boston, they'd be up to their ears in critical praise and free BBQ." -- Boston Phoenix