• Loveless has become as ingenious a singer as she is a songwriter.  Few songwriters in any genre are chronicling the vagaries and vulgarities of commitment with as much wit.

    — Uncut UK
  • Lydia is the only singer/songwriter the power of whose music and voice consistently makes me cry.

    — Richard Hell
  • She’s a master storyteller with a voice that goes down like honey and lyrics that bite like a hangover.

    — Paste Magazine
  • Loveless has carved out an unmistakable voice as a songwriter, and she's only getting better at using it to blur the line between running her mouth and pouring out her heart.

    — Stereogum
  • Sounds Like: Loretta Lynn and Patti Smith slamming shots at a Midwestern dive bar while cowboys and punks brawl out back……her breakout album Somewhere Else is an aching, lusty set of twang and sneer wrapped in electric guitar swagger.

    — Rolling Stone
  • Commands the stage from tune-up to the final bow, with a voice that carries to every ear, no matter how intoxicated the owner.

    — The Noise
  • Manages to conjure up both Exene and Neko Case.

    — Washington Post
  • Her defiant tone is matched by songs that put country and punk on equal ground, unvarnished and direct.

    — Chicago Tribune
  • Heir apparent of Loretta Lynn

    — Twangville
  • If you believe in Rock 'N' Roll, you pray for people like Lydia Loveless.

    — PopMatters
  • Love this woman. Love her. Is "Stevie Nicks singing lead on 'Born to Run'" overstating it? Probably, but too bad.

    — SPIN
Hometown: 
Columbus, OH

New album Real coming August 19, 2016

Blessed with a commanding, blast-it-to-the-back-of-the-room voice, the 25-year-old Lydia Loveless was raised on a family farm in Coshocton, Ohio—a small weird town with nothing to do but make music. With a dad who owned a country music bar, Loveless often woke up with a house full of touring musicians scattered on couches and floors. She has turned this potential nightmare scenario (eww....touring musicians smell...) into a wellspring of creativity.

When she got older, in the time-honored traditions of teenage rebellion, she turned her back on these roots, moved to the city (Columbus, OH) and immersed herself in the punk scene, soaking up the musical and attitudinal influences of everyone from Charles Bukowski to Richard Hell to Hank III.

Loveless's Bloodshot debut album Indestructible Machine combined heady doses of punk rock energy and candor with the country classicism she was raised on and just can’t shake; it was a gutsy and unvarnished mash-up. It channeled ground zero-era Old 97s (with whom she later toured) but the underlying bruised vulnerability came across like Neko Case’s tuff little sister. Indestructible Machine possesses a snotty irreverence and lyrical brashness that’s an irresistible kick in the pants. 

On her second Bloodshot album Somewhere Else, released after a few 7" singles and an EP, Loveless was less concerned with chasing approval – she scrapped an entire album’s worth of material before writing the set – and more focused on fighting personal battles of longing and heartbreak, and the aesthetic that comes along with them. While her previous album was described as “hillbilly punk with a honky-tonk heart” (Uncut), this one couldn’t be so quickly shoehorned into neat categorical cubbyholes. No, things were different this time around—Loveless and her band collectively dismissed the genre blinders and sonic boundaries that came from playing it from a safe, familiar place. Creatively speaking, if Indestructible Machine was an all-night bender, Somewhere Else was the forlorn twilight of the next day, when that creeping nostalgia has you looking back for someone, something, or just... anything. 

2016's Real is one of those exciting records where you sense an artist truly hitting their stride, that their vision is both focused and expansive, and that their talent brims with a confident sense of  place, execution and exploration. Whether you've followed Lydia's career forever, like us, or if you are new to her ample game, Real is gonna grab your ears.

On her first two Bloodshot albums, there were fevered comparisons to acknowledged music icons like Loretta Lynn, Stevie Nicks, Replacements, and more. She's half this, half that, one part something else. We hate math. But, now Real and Lydia Loveless are reference points of their own. Genre-agnostic, Lydia and her road-tightened band pull and tease and stretch from soaring, singalong pop gems, roots around the edges to proto-punk. There are many sources, but the album creates a sonic center of gravity all its own.  

Always a gifted writer with a lot to say, Lydia gives the full and sometimes terrifying, sometimes ecstatic force of the word. Struggles between balance and outburst, infectious choruses fronting emotional torment are sung with a sneer, a spit, or a tenderness and openness that is both intensely personal and universally relatable. It is, as the title suggests, real.

Lydia Loveless has toured with artists such as Old 97's, Drive-By Truckers, Jason Isbell, Iron & Wine, Scott H. Biram, and the Supersuckers. Her music has been praised by Rolling Stone, NPR, Pitchfork, SPIN, Stereogum, Chicago Tribune, and more. 

Loveless penned an original song for the 2015 film I Smile Back, starring Sarah Silverman, and was the subject of the 2016 documentary Who Is Lydia Loveless?, directed by Gorman Bechard.

 

Compilation Tracks: 

Kevin "Shinyribs" Russell (of The Gourds) covers Lydia's "All The Time" on While No One Was Looking: Toasting 20 Years of Bloodshot Records

Recommended if You Like: 
Neko Case
Stevie Nicks
Old 97's
Drive-By Truckers
Lucinda Williams
Kathleen Edwards
Angel Olsen

Similar Bloodshot Artists