Meg Myers isn't Sorry about what she just unleashed onto the world this morning. Her meager 10-track collection of raw, body-possessing songs will shake you to the bone. The haunting, twisted echo of Motel, containing a sample of this 1992 Townes Van Zandt interview, sets the tone for a body of work that is succinctly poised but earth-shattering in its devastation. “I didn’t go to school. I was taking care of my brother and sister. We were moving around from place to place,” she told us recently of her teenage years spent in South Florida. “I was playing music, too, as a 13-year-old in bars and clubs. Things were tough for me. I didn’t really have anybody.” That pain swings like a pendulum prominently throughout the record, heaving with the title track (possessing her most potent vocal) and then sighing with guitar focus on the jarring, but subdued, The Morning After. Her narrative, supported by producer Andy Rosen (Ofelia, Kay; remixes of Britney Spears and Katy Perry) is markedly depressing, but there's a trick of her lyrics that heightens every physical sensation—"I gotta bring you to my hell. Baby, I wanna fuck you. I wanna feel you in my bones. Boy, I'm gonna love you. I'm gonna tear into your soul," she sweetly coos on Desire, a sinister and empowering mix of self-loathing and physical release.
I Really Want You to Hate Me, too, is a heady high, stemmed from her own troublesome youth. "I really want you to hate me. I really want you to find that I am bitter and angry, that I'm no mother of a child," she attests on the slithering and gritty opening passage, injecting a sense of personal deterioration but unrelenting rediscovery. Later, she laments, "I really want you to find that I'm a pitiful girl, that I'm the phoniest alive." Myers melds together the intoxicating roundness of the melody with a sheer, often brutal, delivery. The aching tear in her voice later reasserts itself in the radio-friendly Lemon Eyes and the assuring Feather affirmation, which borrows its message from the Motel opener—Meyers presents her life bookended by the same song, essentially. "Those two songs are kind of about the same thing; both have the same meaning. I just express them in different ways," she said. "That’s how I feel life is, feeling a lot of pain. I wanted to express that with this album, but also expressing the joyful side. Of course, I wouldn’t have been able to without going through all the hard times.”
Sorry succeeds tremendously because it is achingly honest. Myers (uncompromisingly) delves into her inner darkness in an effort to unearth slivers of delicacy and innate beauty. She relishes in pain but only as a gateway to brighter, more vibrant fields of self-worth and livelihood. As a career foundation, following a sequence of EPs (such as 2012's Daughter in the Choir and 2014's Make a Shadow), her first full player stretches her dark mind-scape into compelling (Parade) and energetic territory (A Bolt from the Blue), only leaving us all craving for the next chapter.
Must-Listen Tracks: Sorry, I Really Want You to Hate Me, Desire, Motel
Grade: 4 out of 5
Sorry is now available on Apple Music.