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Shine

Released on 24 September 2007

Artist: Joni Mitchell

3.0 out of 5 (3 customer reviews) | Write a review

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Results 1-5 of 5

  1. One Week Last Summer
  2. This Place
  3. If I Had a Heart
  4. Hana
  5. Bad Dreams Are Good
  6. Big Yellow Taxi
  7. Night of the Iguana
  8. Strong and Wrong
  9. Shine
  10. If

customer Reviews

 Average rating (3 reviews)

 Us & Them

| | See all PorkyPrimechop's reviews (9)

Just as "Blue" had the faithful questioning her sanity and the big productions of the 1980s threw many followers aside with their superstar associations, "Shine" is a challenge to those expecting conventional balladeering or even the directness of protest bombast which she does so well. The tunes are poignant, the words, as ever, witheringly astute, the structures and arrangements often odd. The opener, for example, a song without words and stuttering digital clipping that made me think at first the CD was flawed. Endings sometimes sudden and unsettling.
There is preaching, however, few preachers have earned her right to protest "Your" impending self destruction, or "Our" fate, in just those terms. Blame is, directed as it was in the 1960's at the international capitalist conspiracy. Praise is aimed, similarly, at small personal endeavour and the voice of nature. This is intensly angry music dressed in blue cool and I for one am glad the anger is back. Her "cover" of "Big Yellow Taxi", once issues as a 7" with "Woodstock" on the reverse, is a reminder of this, all be it lacking in the insulted intelligence of the orignal. As with "A Case of You", on "Both Sides Now"(2000), I find my intense feeling for the original clouds my view of their updating and rephrasing, and I question their necessity as they are both utterly timeless songs.
I believe the bitterness she once expressed towards the music industry, that bred success for the likes of Sheryl Crow, Alanis Morrisette, Tori Amos and hundreds more, has subsided and what is coming through in these new expressions is a kinship with her craft; that of writer.
Her quicksilver adaptation of Rudyard Kipling's "If" which concludes the set is almost prayer-like in this context and set against her own questions about the purpose of God and critique of political power in "Strong and Wrong" ups the stakes on the pouting of young singer songwriters of the current generation and their view of the state of human kind.
My only reservation is that arranging and instrumentation are not always assured, though she is, by and large, frugal, tasteful and painterly with her use of natural and synthetic sounds. After indulging in the work of Wayne Shorter's soprano sax warbling for many years, in my view sometimes to excess, one of her few instrumental collaborators here is a Shorter copycat.
There are hints here of a move away from conventional song forms into abstraction with words and music more akin to the work of Steve Reich or Lamont Young. Whatever her style, if the emphasis is on the words and music, not hung up on how it is dressed, it will always be welcomed.

 Shine is stunning album...

| | See all Rosedene's reviews (1)

This is an album which contains superb vocals, varied musical styles and a tempo that will ensure you're relaxed and chilled out. It's a beautiful and stunning collection of songs from this relatively unknown artist - Joni Mitchell. Well worth a listen!

 A STAR SHINES BRIGHTLY,

| | See all finbartheloony's reviews (91)

Top 100 Music Reviewer

The critics have been a little hard on Joni lately,they are as usual wrong, O.K. she has taken years to release this record on a Coffee shop record label,but she has not lost her ability to write ingenius songs that few writers would even attempt.
The album starts with an instrumental"One week last summer" which is a fine starter,a more typical Joni song follws called "This place"track three is Beautifully played and with her beguiling lyrics it can't fail to please.
Her voice is slighly lower in tone than we have become accostomed to and is used to good effect on this song.
"Hana"is more upbeat then we have heardso far ,great soprano sax playing byBob Shepperd
"Bad dreams"is reminiscent of the "Hejira"era ,mentionin
shopping malls and whales,this shows a more bitter and perhaps resentful side of Mitchell emerging .again the production particularly the bass and slide guitar are exemplory.
"Big yellow taxi" is re recorded and still sounds fine,i miss the giggle at the end though!!
"Night of The Iguana"rocks perhaps more than most on the album,strange lyrics though mentioning tour busses
and how "The Jasmine is so mercilessly suite" it conjures up visions of hot California nights,this is i think a grower
"Strong and wrong"is Jonis war song and comment on whats wrong with the world(Why does it take two Canadians Joni,and Neil Young to tell the Americans what the vast majority of the people think about the war?
"Shine" is Joni reflecting on how things could be if man wasn't destroying everything,and is by far the best track on the album.
Rudyard Kiplings exttremely popular poem "If" finishes off the album in fine form,not a bad album then,but the greatest thing is that Joni is back after all these years and that should make everybodys sun shine alittle bit stronger!! i hear that the label has ceased trading so see you on another label soon Joni.

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