No matter your religious or political views, Shawna Virago’s newest album, “Heaven Sent Delinquent” is for everyone. It is not only about her life as a transgender, it is about life in general. The album is honest, witty, and original. Music has a way of uniting people, and Virago attempts that; she uses her lyrical and melodious powers to encourage tolerance and understanding.
The album opens with a folky acoustic track, “Bright Green Ideas,” which features a catchy hook. It’s a great light open to the album. The album suddenly turns serious with the second track, “Gender Armageddon,” which opens with electric guitar that turns acoustic. The song is about being able to escape a bad place with lyrics like, “Last night I dreamed we stole a car/ and smashed through the gates of heaven.”
The third track, “The Ballad of Miss Suzy Texas,” has a folk-rock vibe, and is about a woman who you may not want to mess with. The song portrays Virago’s witty lyrical capabilities with lyrics like, “She had a date with destiny/ To give her ex-husband fistfuls of misery “Last Night’s Sugar” again features acoustic guitar and smart lyrics like, “Some people have no surprises in them/ you can set your clock by their routines.” The title track begins with a memorable guitar beat, and Virago talks about being misunderstood and ostracized, and finally running away with a “Heaven Sent Delinquent.”
“Burnout” opens with the lyrics, “The girls wore black/ like they was Sylvia Plath/ boy I bet they never even read her.” The track is consistent with its humorous lyrics, and perfectly portrays new experiences at a party. Virago channels her inner Bob Dylan with a guest appearance from a harmonica, in this track and in her final track, “Land of Guns and Honey.” Another standout song is “Anniversary Song” which has a beautiful acoustic melody.
Virago is called anti-folk and punk, and while she is both of those, she is first and foremost a singer-songwriter. Her lyrics and guitar are loyal companions throughout this album, which also shows that she is someone who has talent and knows her music. For those who listen to stripped down, lyrical music, this album is worth a listen, sexual preference aside.