Deep down, Joni Mitchell has always been a jazz singer. Though her compositions center on life lessons and other writerly observations, what animates them are the intricate melodies — jackknifing, sharp-cornered lines that demand to-the-syllable specificity. On Both Sides Now, Mitchell applies that precision to tunes that have been famously blubbered over for decades (plus two of her own songs). Where Linda Ronstadt and other pop singers who have covered jazz standards tend to lean on oversize crooning (most recently and abhorrently, George Michael), Mitchell knows that the romance vanishes when the lines are exaggerated. So she concentrates on the melodic essence of torchy warhorses like "You've Changed" and "Stormy Weather," boiling away the frills until all that's left are haunting, painfully stark declarations. Singing atop a velvety orchestra, sounding buoyant one minute and betrayed the next, Mitchell interprets "At Last" with slurry, smeared-paint gestures and gives "Don't Go to Strangers" a weary, Billie Holiday-worthy soul ache. It is Mitchell's emotional generosity, not the fabulous surroundings, that winds up mattering most: After years of spinning yarns heavily dependent on words, she's telling these stories with a repertoire of gingerly placed inflections and anguished sighs, tools she's always had but never flaunted.
Both Sides Now
- Both Sides Now
- Joni Mitchell
Around the Web
Powered By ZergNet
Around the Web
AskMenThe Top 99 Outstanding Women of 2015
Men's Journal12 Things Every Man Should Know About His Penis
The Daily BeastInside New York’s Most ‘Elite’ Sex Party
Men's Journal7 Reasons You Should Quit Facebook in 2015
Salon5 Mysteries We Hope the “X-Files” Reboot Will Resolve
Cinema Blend10 Great Movies To Watch Before Netflix Gets Rid Of Them On April 1
- The Children of ISIS
- Rihanna Asserts Her Dominance on New Song 'Bitch Better Have My Money'
- Dr. Dre Talks N.W.A Biopic, Eazy-E's Death, Eminem and Making New Music
- Roger Daltrey: 'I Want Us to Stop at the Top of Our Game'
- Sara Evans Blasts Fox's 'Last Man on Earth': 'I Was Thoroughly Disgusted'
- Andy Summers on the Police: 'We Were the Most Desirable Men in the World'
- Flashback: The Unedited 'Boats 'N Hoes' Video From 'Step Brothers'
- 10 New Artists You Need to Know: March 2015