I don’t know what it is, but whatever it is, she’s got it. Elisabeth Maurus, more commonly known as Lissie, released her debut full-length album with Fat Possum Records in August 2010 andÂ seven months later it’s still hard to get enough of her. This twelve-track indie folk rock masterpiece is brilliantly crafted with an array of sing-along hits and a few somber reflective ballads woven together by the late-twenties raspy voiced midwestern singer/songwriter.
The first two tracks of the album are my personal favorites. “Record Collector” is a folky, fast paced song that gets the listener involved from its intensity immediately. “When I’m Alone,” arguably her most popular track, is an ode to a lover with simply constructed lyrics and a beat that grabs you.
“And when I reach out and I only got air and it killed me to think that you never did care and it’s hopeless you always run off somewhere else and I throw in a tantrum / Why are you such a battle?” her simple but poignant lyrics scream.
The middle of the album holds it own even though the beginning and ending tracks are the catchiest. “In Sleep” and “Bully,” her ode to her family for their support after she uprooted her life and moved to the West Coast, are both beautiful. “Little Lovin” puts a hopeful twistÂ on the typically sad break-up ballad. “Stranger” is slightly forgettable but “Loosen The Knot” and “Cuckoo” are catchy enough. “Everywhere I Go” is a soft sad song with imagery of angels that paints her as a lost soul with a “tired mind” that “just wants to be led home.”
“Worried About” is an upbeat cathartic song about being too into a relationship, singing “For the last four years of my life I’ve thought about you pretty much every fifteen seconds.” The album ends with “Oh Mississippi,” a very pretty ode to her home town of Rock Island, Illinois on the Mississippi River that is as soothing as it is nature-inspired.
After just completing a tour of the US, the next few months for Lissie will be consumed with touring throughout Europe. Her current album brings plenty of satisfaction as her crisp and introspective lyrics and Fleet Foxes-inspired style connects with teenagers and young adults alike.