It feels to me like the compression piston in the master cylinder is sticking a little when applying the brake- it releases fine. I'll change the fluid when I do the pads- it's been several years and 15,000 miles now.
I'd bleed it first and then, if it still is doing it, take off the master cylinder and clean the parts with a rag and brake fluid. It could be some gunk that is catching the little plunger inside there. Here is what the insides look like:
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