Megan Moroney’s debut album opens with a wry smirk of a song. At first listen, opening track “I’m Not Pretty” sounds like another variation of the common enough country trope of reminding listeners that they’re beautiful, haters be damned. But Moroney, a swiftly rising star in the genre with a firebrand personality, takes it a step further when addressing an “ex-boyfriend’s new girlfriend,” based on an incident that happened to her: “Keep on telling yourself I’m not pretty.” “The whole thing that I think is great about this song is that everyone has been on both sides,” she tells Apple Music’s Kelleigh Bannen. “I think it's funny because everyone can relate to it.” Such bold assertions populate the rest of the LP, which the Savannah, Georgia-born singer-songwriter recorded alongside producer Kristian Bush, also known as one half of Sugarland. Following Moroney’s wildly popular 2022 breakout EP Pistol Made of Roses, Lucky takes the best of that EP—Moroney’s sass and swagger, in particular, but also the vulnerability of tracks like “Fix You Too”—and offers a fuller portrait of her specific vision of country music, which is reminiscent of early Miranda Lambert or Kelsea Ballerini. “Girl in the Mirror” is a painful look at sacrificing one’s own selfhood for a wayward lover. “Another on the Way” pairs a dark, swampy arrangement with a tale of a wise barkeep called Miss Daisy, who sagely advises the heartbroken narrator, “Men, they’re like trains/If you miss one, there’s another on the way.” Closer “Sad Songs for Sad People” has Moroney declaring, “I want every word to hurt like blue eyes crying in the rain,” as a gently soulful rhythm section accentuates her natural twang. And “Tennessee Orange,” which was an early viral hit for Moroney, cleverly plays on Southern football rivalries to tease out the complexities of a relationship. “That was an idea that I had because I found myself wearing a Tennessee shirt,” she says. “I'm a Georgia Bulldog, so I've not even put on an Alabama shirt, Auburn, no other school. And so I found myself in a Tennessee shirt and I looked in the mirror and I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, my mom would literally kill me right now if she knew that I had on a Tennessee shirt.’ I was like, wait, what if I turn this into a love song? ‘Look what I would do for you.’ And so I came up with ‘In Georgia, they call it a sin/I'm wearing Tennessee orange for him.’”

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