Manchester based singer showcases huge electro-pop sound that suggests stardom is not far away
Lucky Me marks something of a rebirth for Phoebe Green. Back in 2016, the then teenage singer from Lytham in Lancashire released 02:00AM, a collection of indie-pop numbers detailing, in sometimes disarming detail, the horrors of adolescent life.
Six years later, and it’s a very different Phoebe Green who’s releasing her ‘official’ debut album. Gone are the indie-rock stylings and in their place is a huge, electro-pop sound. Shortly after the release of 02:00AM, Green relocated from Lytham to Manchester, and that shift seems to have consumed her music.
The influence of touring partners such as Self Esteem and Everything Everything can also be heard through Lucky Me. Like those acts, Green’s sound is unconventional but never loses sight of a pure pop sensibility. Crying In The Club is one of the best ‘sad banger’ tracks this side of Robyn, while under all the distorted vocals and discordant synths, Break Your Heart is a engagingly catchy opening track.
Anyone who enjoyed the most recent Let’s Eat Grandma will also find plenty to enjoy with Green. The title track is a cascade of shimmering synths and deadpan vocals – the contrast between the huge sound and Green’s detached vocals, seemingly berating herself (“don’t talk like that, you’re such a brat”) becomes incredibly effective.
The aforementioned Crying In The Club is one of the album standouts – Green’s standout vocals above a whirl of synths, which slowly builds up to become one of the most hypnotic moments on Lucky Me. The way it suddenly crashes to a halt in a burst of laughter with Green delightedly yelling “I never fucking loved you” just adds to its charm.
Anyone who’s familiar with Green’s work won’t be surprised by her lyrical openness on Lucky Me. As well as songs dealing with privilege (the title track), there’s discussion of no-strings sex on Just A Game, and One You Want promises that “I may let you do me in the kitchen”. Emotional vulnerability is also dealt with on Wish You Never Saw Me Cry, and the disturbing, eerie DieDieDie talks of surviving trauma.
It’s credit to Green though (and her collaborators Jessica Winter, Dave McCracken and Kaines & Tom AD from Everything Everything) that none of this is remotely a chore to listen to. Despite the often heavy lyrical content, Lucky Me mostly sounds light and fresh – with perhaps only Leach’s self-loathing becoming a bit oppressive towards the end of the record.
It may not possess the crossover hit that would see her joining her friend Self Esteem headlining festivals just yet, but on the basis of Lucky Me, stardom is not that far away for Phoebe Green.