Which Side Are You On?
The world needs more radicals like Ani DiFranco: wry, sexy, as committed to beauty and joy as revolution. Her 17th LP is buoyed by communal seas: fellow political activists carrying the torch (the New Orleans art-funk update of the folk-standard title track); weed smokers weighing culture hypocrisy ("J"); a homeless mom baring her heart ("Life Boat"). Channeling multiple voices and styles, DiFranco rises to the cultural moment with a grin: "If you're not getting happier as you get older," she reasons on "If Yr Not," a deliciously noisy slow grind, "then you're fuckin' up."
• Photos: Random Notes