Dova Lewis – Self Titled (EP)

From Montreal, CA Dova Lewis hits the ground running with the release of her self-titled EP. This excellent, brisk 4 track wonder which was co-produced with Dova by Daryl Swan with all songs written by Lewis is an excellent arrival from a woman looking to use her voice to empower both herself and others who could use a little push and a little belief right now in a very troubled world. The four tracks “Lie”, “Dreamer”, “Build Myself” and “California” which run in that order all work perfect as they craft a narrative built of love and personal validation of believing in yourself, which I know might sound a little cheesy, but it’s true and the world needs more positive affirmation. The first three tracks are like the same idea but presented in fun ways like the vengeful but fun “Lie”, the more over the top kind of Broadway fireworks show that is “Dreamer” and the “Build Myself” which sounds like it’s begging to be used in countless dance recitals and commercials.


It’s incredible how these songs pair which is why the final song “California” is almost jarring in how, for lack of a better term, real it gets. Sacrifice is a big theme in this record with plenty of lines dedicated to leaving things behind for the chance to go for it all, and there’s always been a romantic quality to artists who have that Devil-May-Care attitude, the truth is that like for anyone, giving something up is only good in hindsight when you can say you’ve made it, and sometimes you don’t have a choice in what’s taken from you, like in “Lie” when Lewis recounts the false “love” of someone who said they’d give their undying support, but that turned out to be (of course) a lie, and only furthered the narrative of holding Lewis back. Lewis is so supremely talented, I would love to know the kind of detractors she’s faced in her life because this album must be the best middle finger to them, and even then it’s done with such poise and grace, you can’t even assume she’s petty about it.


She’s always had a strong affection for music since it was the norm in her household and she’s even performed piano solos of original songs inspired by her love of early 2000s bands. It’s interesting to note that it’s very obvious that she loves music, not just someone who loves the music *they* love, you can tell she really loves all music and has found a way to implement so different tones and styles and rhythms into just four tracks, which is just nuts really when you factor in how well it all works together. In a lot of ways, this is an almost breakup album, but it starts with breaking up with a person, and then eventually breaking up with doubt and mistrust, but by the end when she’s saying goodbye to the place that felt like home, that’s the breakup that truly strings the most. This is a fantastic debut and highly recommended.

Mark Druery