Like tourmate MJ Lenderman and his other band Wednesday, Florry are a part of a crop of rising DIY rock acts whose influences are more in the vein of Kris Kristofferson or Drive-By Truckers than anything 4AD or Sub Pop released in the ’90s. Singer-songwriter Francie Medosch started out as a teenager recording tense, depressive lo-fi indie rock, but during the pandemic, she had a realization: She wasn’t depressed anymore. “I think it’s cool to have art that reflects where you are in the moment,” she said then. She’d also been revisiting old favorites like Gram Parsons and Neil Young, planting seeds for the folksy new sound that would take hold on 2021’s Big Fall. Florry’s second proper album, The Holey Bible, posits an alternative to nihilistic indifference: What if instead of dispassionately accepting disaster as inevitable, we use the bitter end as a motivator to make the best of what time is left?

Though Florry’s sound has always had a homespun quality, on The Holey Bible, Medosch and her backing band—complete with 12-string guitar, fiddle, mandolin, harmonica, and plenty of pedal steel—push further toward old-school country. Medosch lets her melodies wander somewhat aimlessly, her voice meandering like she’s strolling through her rural Pennsylvania hometown. Even in moments where her androgynous yowl threatens to break, like when she pleads, “Try to make seeense” on “Big Winter,” her understated confidence makes it feel intentional.

That nerve translates into Medosch’s lyrics, which tend to feel like accounts of daily life, footnoted with the things she wished she could’ve said but didn’t. “The show was good and the beer was cheap,” she sings on the spunky opener “Drunk and High,” addressing a would-be lover: “You can take me home in my SUV, you can tuck me into bed, but you can’t kiss me.” On the especially twangy “Take My Heart,” Medosch recounts a memory of a sex dream that turns out to be surprisingly emotionally poignant: “You took my trust and placed it inside of you/That’s something I need, it’s something you can teach me.” But not all love songs address another person, and Medosch’s are full of love for life in general, like the fervor of summer (“Hot Weather”) or the exhilaration of the open road. “I’m the travelin’ amoeba takin’ you for a ride,” she proclaims on “Cowgirl in a Ditch,” underscoring the odd thrill of feeling microscopic in a world so vast.

All the while, Medosch and her charmingly nasal drawl strike a note of realism that keeps The Holey Bible from tipping into toxic positivity. On the gentle, plodding “Song for My Art,” she captures the persistent moral back-and-forths of the creative life, reckoning with her desire to be understood while simultaneously fending off insecurity, egotism, and writer’s block. “You hate your art but you love it too/You hate your love but you love it too,” she sings. The Holey Bible doesn’t care to gloss over human imperfection and frailty. Nothing is ever guaranteed to work out, Florry seem to say—but isn’t it worth sticking around just in case?

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Florry: The Holey Bible