Lissie is as earnest as they come – and on her second studio album, Back to Forever, the singer-songwriter bares her soul even more. Opener "The Habit" builds with alluring piano and charging bass drum, erupting into a swift chorus of dancing hi-hats and churning guitars. The Illinois native shows some snarl on "Shameless," riding the track's pugnacious bob-and-weaves: "I see you look at me/ I swear that it is bugging me," she sneers. "What the fuck?"
But Lissie doesn't shut herself off with combative attitudes. "Sleepwalking" coasts on dreamy "ah-ah-ah" chants and gliding guitars and synths, and the slow-building ballad "Mountaintop Removal" starts with the most delicate levels of sound before Lissie's vocals and naked piano bursts into a defiantly mammoth refrain. "America, I am American," she sings.
Lissie packs in some scorching cuts like "Can't Take It Back," which explodes into thrashing dance-pop fury, but doesn't abandon her vulnerable side. Closer "Back to Forever" ends the album as open as ever, as Lissie sings behind nothing but strings and a gentle acoustic guitar.
Back to Forever will be out October 8th.