Here’s a bit of a change of “scenery” for me, so to speak – a non-original rambling piece of opinion or poetry. Nope. This post marks a very special day for me, and not because Diablo III was released after what seemed like a gazillion-year wait. Today my favorite musical artist released a new single from her highly-anticipated (at least to her moderately-sized and dedicated fanbase), which means that in a few months’ time there’ll be a new record for me to obsess about and listen to non-stop for at least a year (much to the chagrin of my neighbors, friends, family, and total strangers).
Alanis Morissette, ladies and gentlemen, is getting another chance at making an impact with the international music market that has grown sick and tired of generic dance music and awful “rap” music secretly disguised as what some fans call “ringtone rap” (see Pitbull, T-Pain, etc.). Alanis is far from being one of the most unique artists, but she’s got an interesting blend of vocals, lyrics, and music that work for her. You can immediately pinpoint an Alanis track within the first few notes, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
Alanis has gotten lots of exposure lately thanks to a stint on the TV show The Voice (the one without Jennifer Lopez as a judge… *shudders*) as a guest mentor for musicians and vocalists trying to make it big by performing in front of some of music’s biggest artists. She was sweet, charming, compassionate, and everything that we fans have come to associate with Alanis’ personality throughout the years. She was also on a few TV shows, contributing tracks to movies and special compilations, and finding time to release a wildly-popular parody/satire/cover of the Black Eyed Peas’ “My Humps.” Not too many artists can turn one of the stupidest songs ever into an intriguing study of why the boys love lady humps with soul-shattering vocals and a quiet piano accompaniment while making fun of one’s one musical style, but Alanis pulled it off.
But enough of the drooling and fan worship; most of my friends have known that I’ve been a huge Alanis fan for years, since Jagged Little Pill came out and rocked my world while I was stuck in Catholic school in the mid-’90s in Ohio, of all places. Any new Alanis music is a cause for celebration, and here’s the lyrics video for her new song “Guardian,” which was released on radio today and made available on iTunes:
It’s Alanis experimenting with a bit of the musical departure that she showcased on the awesome album Flavors of Entanglement – one of my favorite records released during the past five years. Electronic flourishes, industrial beats, ambient rhythms, rockin’ guitars, and an album’s worth of heartbreak and enlightenment made FOE quite a refreshing take on Alanis’ typical musical vibe, and I was greatly surprised and happy about that. I think some of her best lyrics are showcased in that album in songs like “Citizen of the Planet,” “Straitjacket,” and “Moratorium.” We can thank Ryan Reynolds for that, who was her beau for three years before dumping her for Scarlett Johansson, who he then dumped for Blake Lively… I guess he has a thing for Canadian ladies or something.
Alanis’ newest record, the awesomely-titled Havoc and Bright Lights (her most normal-titled album yet) will be released on August 28th through a new label called The Collective, finally abandoning ship with Maverick/Reprise Records after years of releasing records through them. Of note: Maverick Records was the record label run by Guy Oseary and his famous client, Madonna, who gave Alanis her big break in the USA and around the world with JLP. I’ll be ready with money in hand to pick up the record and proceed to geek out while taking it all in. Apparently this is her most socially-aware album, based on an interview she did recently with Rolling Stone magazine, so looking forward to what she has to say.
Keep on cranking out the records, Alanis.