Out Of The Clay And Into The Dust
I am writing this on the same day three years prior to the release of the self-titled EP: Lucy Kruger & The Lost Boys – a body of work that rustled my understanding of what it means to be intimate. A voice singled in the sea, picking strings, hollowed out and draped in the rise and hands of a melody. A girl and waking woman conversing with the wilderness, the animal row in the heart. I came to know her foundation of Lost Boys. Her band of musicians. Her friends, her members spirited away in the mire of songwriting and storytelling technique. I thought of them as spiritual minstrels coated in the psychedelia of genuine emotion. What you see is what you let and what you hear is what you threaten to lose. Gain. And ravage.
Three years later and the soft animal comes quiet, seeking answers, rising to its name and calling in the wild. Summer’s Not That Simple is a monumental LP, primed by a voice of intimate conversations, and steered by the animal beat of driven hooves, wild and trudging in the desert night, or in the dreamscape of the desert sea, a beast able on both land and ocean, Lucy Kruger & The Lost Boys have perfected their prowess, seasoned in a maturity that has always been present.
‘Empty Hands’ opens the LP, bare and untethered, kicking in a small room and picking strings, picking at secrets in the shrouded self, melodically bound, an inquiry into the nature of a light now lost. It comes as a question to the mother: Mama won’t you help me find the light | See I thought I hid it safe inside the night | But the x that marked the spot has worn with age | And all the signs begin to look the same. The tide is rising, high tide rolling, accentuated by the low harmonies of a male’s voice: the familiar heart murmur of a Medicine Boy. But nothing’s real | Not you nor me | Soon we’ll leave this place.
‘Could We Leave This’ bares the likes of a timeless poem, exploring themes deemed ageless, forever wistful, the heartache of what it takes to make things work. There are denials in question, worthy of healing alone, a nature painting where the wind and the sun resemble the demeanour of people and the land cultivates room for a new beginning. But the land cultivates the past too, memories buried for anyone’s taking, but not everyone who unearths the moment will grasp the measure of love and hurt entombed there. As the song concludes it becomes clear that this is burial ground for lovers in question. With no goodbye and no goodnight | We turn to cold, become the night | We are the dust that settled down | We are the golden deep beneath the ground | Could we leave this | Could we leave this.
‘Blue Leaves’ is a night time lullaby. A nightmare song in the wilderness, carried on the back of a cantering creature, reasonably alone and pressing on, looking to answer a call, the trauma of a child raised in the outback, slipping into a severance of dreams and turning Autumn into a candour of colour. The rain is breaking free and the child is turning and turning in sleep as a means to breathe. Somewhere in the folds of this nightmare | Somewhere between the pieces that don’t care | Is a perfectly frightened child | Is a call to the wild.
Summer’s Not That Simple captures the sound drifts of a psychedelic preoccupation, but where it succeeds is in reinventing the niche with acoustic tinges of subjection and vulnerability as well as a voice that cannot be replicated.