Some of the best voices in modern rock right now happen to belong to women: the Alabama Shakes’s Brittany Howard, Hop Along’s Frances Quinlan, and Against Me!’s Laura Jane Grace, to name only a few. This year, Meg Myers has proven herself ready to be added to that growing list. Myers, who grew up in Florida and now lives in Los Angeles, released her debut album, Sorry, this fall, after her first two EPs drew comparisons to Alanis Morissette, Fiona Apple, and Shirley Manson in their biting lyricism. She’s a pop-laced callback to the ’90s alt singer-songwriter, and though there are plenty of other new bands riffing on that same attitude, Myers’s vulnerability sets her apart. Her songs, try as hard as they do to push you away — “I really want you to hate me,” she sings five songs deep into her album — beg for even more intimacy.
Meyers will often disguise her pain with angry bursts of distortion, but it’s not as easy to hide from your emotions when it’s just you and your guitar. In an acoustic performance of “The Morning After,” which Vulture premieres above, Myers wrestles with one of her darkest songs. “It’s about loss and having a difficult time moving on,” she tells us. “I don’t always perform it at my shows unless the crowd is the right type of crowd because otherwise I can’t connect as deeply and then there’s no point. I’ve told a few crowds to shut the fuck up halfway through and they have.” She’s seen here laughing with her cello player, Ken Oak, before performing, but that all changes the second she starts. Suddenly, both Myers’s demeanor and the room’s mood are cut with the kind of sorrow that demands your attention. “Musically and lyrically, my album is a whole lot of feelings and experiences that I’ve been through the last few years,” she adds. “There’s a lot of expression of love, sex, death, loss, hope, and pain.”
You can catch Myers in action tonight at Webster Hall if you’re in New York. Sorry is out now on Atlantic.