Lillian King’s Outta the Park is cool as hell! Lillian King is cool as hell! Just look at the cover art – she looks like she’s about to play the lead in A League of Their Own 2: Women are Better Than Men at Baseball. It’s an album that’s chill and biting, and humorous (sometimes all in one song) and one of my favourite discoveries of 2017.
Guitars wobble, are aggressively struck, and delicately plucked throughout the record. They are the gentle summer breeze, a borrowed truck’s diesel exhaust, and irate glances. Closer “Walkin Out,” for instance, builds from gentle sounds to a thorny din whose anger is cathartic. But the guitars, and all the instrumentals, always turn their attention to King; she is the centrepiece of Outta The Park and a recurring source of fascination.
King’s voice is monotonous, calming, and matter-of-factly. Her croon is spiked with attitude. She knows herself so well that everything she says is clear and confident. On “That” she flips off someone who tells her to relax and then on the following track “Swimming” she flips someone off again but this time does so while in a lake floating on her back as the rain gently falls on her face: “Do not yell to me that we should head back.”
“Baseball” is the ideal song if your summer 2017 look is inspired by Benny ‘The Jet’ Rodriguez from The Sandlot, you’re a fan of baseball, and/or you hate mansplainers – so it’s a song for everyone. Throughout, King offers commentary on the rules and the ongoing game (a refreshing change from those who usually provide commentary) while also mildly objectifying the players: “we’ve got a rookie with a real cute face”. Another favourite: “A Seat Outside“ is for those (like me) who aren’t big fans of summer but will use the season’s lethargy as an excuse to flop around and question your life choices – ice cream is not provided.
Outta the Park is a home run.
Top Tracks: “A Seat Outside“; “Baseball”
Rating: Proud Hoot (Really Good) + *swoop*