Alanis Morissette is coming back! Her first new album in over four years is titled Havoc And Bright Lights and is slated for release August 28th. The first single Guardian will hit radio May 11th and iTunes on the 15th.
Judging by the sound of Guardian, it would seem like Alanis is once again attempting to write a radio hit. Something she hasn’t been able to achieve since Everything in 2004. The song is most reminiscent to her 2002 record Under Rug Swept however there are elements of Jagged Little Pill and Flavors Of Entanglement mixed in there as well – making it a career-spanning-sounding song. There’s a neat hook amongst the layered production and the layout itself is very standard to the Alanis signature. Will it appeal to general audiences? Not likely. Should it? Maybe not.
Havoc And Bright Lights will also be Alanis’ first independent album, finally finishing her contract with Warner/Maverick. That might suggest that she is no longer restricted by the demands (or requests) of a major label. An album for the fans, some might say? There doesn’t seem to be a lot of change from this sound and much of Alanis’ offering post-Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie.
While I’ve often thought that radio is pretty much done with Alanis judging by the dwindling success of each subsequent album following Jagged Little Pill, it would seem pointless to make a song aiming for radio success – though stranger comebacks have happened. With that said, I’m unsure what to expect from this new album. Since the release of her last record, 2008′s Flavors Of Entanglement, Alanis has gotten married and had a baby. That sort of settling down might be telling as to what to expect on this new album, although Alanis has said that every song has a monster chorus. Sounds promising.
For now, Guardian should sooth the fans that continue to stick by. I’ll place it above Underneath and Everything for now as far as my favourite first-singles go while I anxiously await for the rest of the album to come out. So look for the single out May 15th on iTunes.