If you’re like me, you probably teared up on the first listen of “the record,” boygenius’ debut album. The ones who get it, get it.

There is something so evocative and unique about all three artists in the band, and when they come together to create an album such as this one, it’s something so entirely singular and special. Lucy Dacus, Julien Baker and Phoebe Bridgers are standalone artists outside of the band; what interests me the most here are the ways in which they lead songs. Often, a song will function like a car: driven by one of the three, while the other two follow along in the passenger seat. This dynamic draws out all of their voices while still allowing for their styles to mesh together seamlessly. If you haven’t listened to “the record” yet — open your music streaming app immediately — I’ll do my best here to give a rundown on the tracklist.

“the record” begins with an a capella-style ode to the people we love and cannot live without, as well as an extended ode to those who created them. “Without You Without Them” is a perfect way to kick off the album and introduces us to all three voices individually as well as in conversation with one another. The lyrics tug at your heartstrings, not uncommon for a boygenius song, exposing a universal feeling that can be attributed to any important relationship.

The next few tracks are a bit of a departure from the opening, both lyrically and sonically. “$20,” “Emily I’m Sorry” and “True Blue” were released prior to the launch of the full album, so I’ve had quite a bit of time to leave them on repeat. These are songs that seem to morph the more you listen to them; “$20” seems to sound different — Bridgers’ screaming session at the end pierces my ears in a new way — every time it comes up in my playlist. “Emily I’m Sorry” keeps finding new meanings. “True Blue” seems to twist and turn on its way into my ears. Although these songs were released earlier, they are pieces that I return to: playgrounds that I find myself still willing to play in.

The album moves on to songs like “Cool About It” and “Not Strong Enough,” tracks with relatively different themes but all converge on one point: the three artists are all given their own verses to sing. What’s so impressive about it is that when the individual artist is singing, it sounds like their own song. When they come together to sing refrains, though, the record is inextricably and unquestionably theirs as a team. Their music is seamlessly sewn together, harmonies laced with each other, voices complementing and finishing. By the time we get to the refrain at the end of “Not Strong Enough” where the music ramps up as they repeat “Always an angel, never a god,” I feel as though I’m having an out-of-body experience.

Bridgers then kicks things off with “Revolution 0,” an anthem you can get lost in — in the lyrics here, there is a sense of a parasocial relationship. Her musical inspirations are telling her to make music, so she does: “You wanted a song, so it’s gonna be a short one.” This piece spirals into vocalization that aligns with the melody; it’s one of those songs where you just have to close your eyes and listen.

Though it’s impossible for me to pick a favorite off this album, “Leonard Cohen” definitely stakes a claim for a spot at the top. It’s a shorter song, but with so much rich emotion packed into it. “Leonard Cohen” features some of the simpler lines: “I might like you less now that you know me so well” and “I never thought you’d happen to me.” These are lyrics that made me stop and stare at the wall for a while. There’s always compliments to be given when an artist can effectively communicate complex emotions, especially in a song that’s only a minute and forty seconds long.

The three get in another song with all of their voices wound more closely together. The speaker of “Satanist” asks a simple question: “Will you be a Satanist with me?” If we boil the song down even further: “Will you do anything with me?” Another song with a therapeutic screaming session, “Satanist” features a more pop-rock vibe, with lyrics that get deeply specific. It’s a bit of a reprieve before moving into the final three songs of “the record”, which are some of my personal favorites, with some of the most heart-wrenching lyrics.

“We’re In Love” spotlights Dacus’ voice and illuminates simple truths. The ballad, musically slower, is another ode to the people we love. It explores the meaning of the word itself — what does it mean to be in love with somebody? To Dacus, it seems to boil down to one thought: “If you rewrite your life, may I still play a part?” This line can stand on its own. What a simple and compelling way to denote love.

The album picks up slightly one last time before the end with “Anti-Curse,” a catchy beat and speaker-centered track. The song is led by Baker, who exhibits her vocal prowess in subtle ways — her voice crescendoing in the middle and growing gravelly at the end. The speaker of this song seems to be grappling with mortality — who isn’t? — as she looks death in the eye, pondering the fact that she “did alright, considering,” and “tried to be a halfway decent friend.” That’s all we can really do, after all.

The closing track of “the record,” “Letter to An Old Poet,” is driven by Bridgers, and is perhaps the most intriguing; it deals with a toxic relationship and features callbacks to both the sonic rhythm and lyrical content of a song from their first EP, “Me & My Dog.” The song, true to Bridgers’ usual style, is set over a soft piano instrumental. She draws out her final line, “But I am waiting,” so that it feels as if we, as listeners, are also waiting for something. I, personally, am waiting for more boygenius music. They fill up my playlists every time.

Despite being boygenius’ first released album, “the record” deals with such a depth of human emotion and particularly engages with the overarching theme of being known: bearing witness to those we love, and being created in return. Massive things to grapple with, but boygenius does so with grace.

If I haven’t convinced you to listen to “the record” yet, please refer back to the title altered lyrics from “Leonard Cohen.” Think about the relationship we’ve formed as writer and reader over the span of this article, and, by extension, the one you and I have formed with boygenius through the simple act of knowing them. It’s a phenomenal album, and in Phoebe Bridgers’ own words, “It matters to me.”