2 albums ago with 2002's Under Rug Swept, it seemed that Alanis Morissette's songwriting tone had begun to change. The vitriol that characterized her breakthrough Jagged Little Pill was beginning to fade. In the glow of her romantic relationship with actor Ryan Reynolds, 2004's So-Called Chaos seemed settled in a cozy adult pop mode. Now, 4 years later, the relationship is over and Alanis once again takes on her uniquely cathartic rollercoaster ride. Painful yes, but also refreshingly exhilarating.
Released June 2008
Pain, Power, and Purpose
Few songwriters cut to the core of emotional pain as effectively as Alanis Morissette. Her album Flavors of Entanglement comes in the wake of the breakup of a romantic engagement. The personal pain experienced is palpable in songs like "Straitjacket" ("Talking with you’s like talking to a sieve that can’t hear me") and "Versions of Violence" ("These versions of violence...still leave their mark once disappeared").
However, the album is also fleshed out with statements of personal power and purpose. Alanis Morissette boldly declares that she is a "Citizen of the Planet." In breaking free of past constraints in the song "Moratorium," Morissette declares "a full time out from all things commitment." The song "Giggling Again for No Reason" boldly steps once again into joy with words like "I'm reeling jubilation, triumphant in delight."
Expanding the Musical Palette
British electronica producer Guy Sigsworth is in the booth for Flavors of Entanglement. His contributions show strongly in the expansive sound palette on the album. Electronically enhanced sitars swirl through "Citizen of the Planet." Fuzzed electronic crunch animates "Versions of Violence." "Giggling Again for No Reason" rides an almost Kraftwerk-like sonic pillow.
Top Tracks on 'Flavors of Entanglement'
- "Citizen of the Planet"
- "Versions of Violence"
- "Giggling Again for No Reason"
A Solid, Coherent Effort
Although on So-Called Chaos it looked like Alanis Morissette may be descending into somewhat faceless adult pop, she has roared back into relevance on Flavors of Entanglement. Pushing her own instrumental boundaries while digging ever deeper into her trademark confessional lyric style, Morissette takes us on another thrill ride of emotion. Here she effortlessly reasserts ownership of her own inimitable niche in the pop music universe.