Star-Crossed [Mystery Colors]
Kacey Musgraves’ chronicle of marriage and divorce looks to the stars but takes pains to stay grounded. Writing in the plain language of someone desperate to be understood, she sounds alternately vulnerable and triumphant.
There is no great betrayal on star-crossed; no bloodletting; no revenge. While Kacey Musgraves’ fourth album intends to guide you from the early stages of a marriage through the aftermath of a divorce, the East Texas songwriter barely mentions the other person at the heart of her story, and her narrator doesn’t seem all that surprised when things start heading south. The 15-track record is billed as a “tragedy in three parts”—inspired by Shakespeare and a pivotal experience on psychedelic mushrooms, paired with an expensive-looking film and the most elaborate production of her career—but Musgraves takes great pains to ground the songs in reality, where things happen subtly, quietly, and without poetry. “If this was a movie, love would be enough,” she sings. “But it’s not a movie.”
star-crossed Album Review