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alanismorissette havocandbrightlights
Artist: Alanis Morissette
Title: Havoc and Bright Lights
Genre: Pop
Release Date: 24th August 2012
Label: Sony Music Entertainment

Album Review

So, Alanis Morissette returns to the studio three years after her last moody-electro infused opus, ‘Flavors of Entanglement’. However, this time she returns a fully restored, less vitriolic stature of a lady now that she’s a mother and a wife; these roles are a major influence in this record whereas ‘Flavors of Entanglement’ was a fusion of pent up frustration and angst relating to the break up of her last relationship.

Here, we hear her at her most warming and uplifting, tracks like her current single, ‘Guardian’ really oozes with energy and vibrancy, the single is also the introductory track, so ‘Havoc and Bright Lights’ kicks off with a real miasma of euphoria. It’s until gentle and cosy songs like ‘Til You’ and ‘Empathy’ that project a weakness in the album. ‘Celebrity’, ‘Numb’ and ‘Woman Down’ really tone up the more intense moments of the album, making other songs less invoking and provocative to the ears. The songs are all catchy and listenable along with enjoyable riffs but they lack dynamics, almost to the point of forgetful music. The songs are the typified formula of ‘pop disguised as rock’ – they lack power and integrity. Although, Morissette does make distinctions in terms of the spectrum of sounds she explores, the canvas is broad; there are harmonies of piano ballads such as ‘Havoc’, heavy blows of moody guitars and moments of reminiscing ambience. Despite such scope, it fails to deliver, inevitably descending into a mesh of a lukewarm creation.

Musically and conceptually, ‘Flavors of Entanglement’ was a more interesting album direction-wise, there isn’t much in ‘Havoc and Bright Lights’ to grasp but there are moments that really work and compliment the record but unfortunately, it just doesn’t quite cut the usual brilliance of Morissette, we all know there would never be another ‘Jagged Little Pill’ but nor would we consider that she would ever create such a mediocrity; It is mostly bland with less havoc and most certainly very dull lights.


01. Guardian
02. Woman Down
03. ‘Til You
04. Celebrity
05. Empathy
06. Lens
07. Spiral
08. Numb
09. Havoc
10. Win and Win
11. Receive
12. Edge of Evolution


Alanis Morissette – Vocals, Guitars, Keyboards, Harmonica
Paul Bushnell – Bass
David Levita – Guitar
Kenny Aronoff – Drums


Cover Picture

alanismorissette havocandbrightlights


Music: 5
Sound: 4
Total: 5 / 10

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