Sarah McLachlan
Laws of Illusion


4.5
superb

Review

by patriciojuan USER (2 Reviews)
September 7th, 2010 | 14 replies


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Laws of Illusion is not an illusion of bliss.

Sarah McLachlan is not happy lately. But I would bet on her not being suicidal or raging either. It was wrong to assume that she's happy on the basis of Loving You Is Easy or on the cover of her new, Laws of Illusion. Not until you read through the liner notes of the CD will you find out about her new drummer, Tori Amos' very own, Matt Chamberlain, who replaces her long-time drummer and now ex-husband, Ashwin Sood whom I've always had mixed feelings about because inspect the backstage footage of Afterglow Live and you can sense, in a footage where Sood talks to a bunch of girls ostensibly about how they feel about Sarah and her concert, that there's an unmistakable flirty vibe in the way he talks to them, the Sarah McLachlan fans. Sarah McLachlan is not frequently featured in the pages of Yahoo OMG because she's not that type of celebrity, and so of course things as major as her divorce escapes public scrutiny and disdain, as if divorced celebrities is a novelty. She tweets too, although it's likely that it's the record label, and only to say, often, that she's playing at some small venue, at times at a Starbucks, no less, or at times at bigger venues such as wherever her Lilith Fair crew is currently playing. Other than what she means to spill about her life can only be surmised through her songs which is just as it should be.

To hear of her true feelings for Sood, dissect the lush ballad, among some other pretty things in Laws, Forgiveness, where she rips Sood to pieces, but still ever so gently, by piano, by addressing the 'loving lying enemy' with a heartbreaking mix of longing and vindictiveness. Before she sets Ashwin Sood to endless days of remorse, she frolics, or, her term, awashes herself in illusions of bliss, in songs like Illusions of Bliss, gets really illusory in Loving You is Easy, screaming 'I get so high!' 'Shot like a starburst!" which is the closest she gets to sounding like a crazy girl, a rare treat considering she's always been usually melancholic and angsty which have always been concealed under her gentle piano playing.

I don’t know how significant it is that her new drummer is also Tori's, but just the thought of the possibilities is exciting. While it's thrilling to fantasize that the two might duet, or just be in the same room together, I don't think the idea will come from the drummer (no offense meant to creative drummers). Not that that's urgent. They're fine on their own, even if in McLachlan's case, long-time collaborator Pierre Marchand's still doing much of the production, doing great things to otherwise usual Sarah McLachlan songs, which are basically songs that will get played in movie or TV scenes that usually signify the emotional crux of the story, songs that will get heavy blogger emoting-through-music posts, songs like Angel which a decade after getting featured from the City of Angels soundtrack, many still find haunting and lovely, descriptions which have been consistently used by anyone who's ever cared to talk about Sarah's songs, songs like Love Come which crescendos to a gorgeous finale, songs that no one does quite lovelier than she.

That Forgiveness is about Ashwin Sood is just conjecture of course, and it hardly matters who the song's about or what it's really about, but really, it's about Sood. But it doesn't matter because it would be just as resonant and beautiful had it been specifically written for her dog. When Sarah McLachlan does this, sing about someone who's wronged her, as opposed to occasions when she writes a plain, old love song, like Push which she wrote for Sood, you realize suddenly how horrible it must be to do someone harm which is such a simplistic realization but that also when you encounter these, songs like Forgiveness or its equivalent, say, when someone writes you a well-crafted, seriously thought and constructed letter or e-mail, that there's no harm or pain that you wouldn't trade for pain you wish you have instead, instead of being its inflicter. If I were Sood, I'd stay away from the radio forever, or I'll just move to my homeland India where Sarah McLachlan wouldn't get much radio airtime. But then a world without Sarah McLachlan songs, that's impossible and unbearable, less aurally beautiful, maybe even if I were Ashwin Sood.


user ratings (23)
Chart.
3.5
great
other reviews of this album
Trey Spencer STAFF (4)
After a seven-year hiatus, Sarah is back and as strong as ever....

related reviews

Surfacing

Wintersong
recommended by reviewer
Sarah McLachlan Afterglow

Comments:Add a Comment 
morrissey
Moderator
September 7th 2010


1688 Comments


If you are not Pat Sessions you have been a very bad boy.

kangaroopoo
September 7th 2010


3175 Comments


Nice review. Sarah is great. I fumble towards ecstasy listening to her.

Willie
Moderator
September 7th 2010


16149 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

naughty naughty...

Digging: Mors Principium Est - Dawn Of The 5th Era

patriciojuan
September 7th 2010


18 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

incidentally i am pat sessions, morissey. so i'm a good boy.

patriciojuan
September 7th 2010


18 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

thanks, NpDthPTopethNeurisis.

morrissey
Moderator
September 7th 2010


1688 Comments


In that case very well written review. We always have to be vigilant when fluid writing appears in a debut review; you can understand our skepticism.

patriciojuan
September 8th 2010


18 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

duly noted, sir. i hope it's not an issue if it appeared somewhere else. i'm new and quite unaware to sputnik etiquette.

lobby
September 8th 2010


1251 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I've yet to rate this, although its pretty solid.

Willie
Moderator
September 8th 2010


16149 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

duly noted, sir. i hope it's not an issue if it appeared somewhere else. i'm new and quite unaware to sputnik etiquette.
Of course we'd like to be the only place a review was located, but it's not an issue. The issue is when new users copy a review from another site and then paste it here and try to pass it off as their own.

Also, excellent album but she might have waited too long to release it.

Jethro42
September 8th 2010


12662 Comments


I should like it

STOP SHOUTING!
September 8th 2010


639 Comments


that fourth sentence is crazy.

patriciojuan
September 9th 2010


18 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

will keep that in mind, willie. the thing with sarah though is she doesn't release album after album of unremarkable stuff the way tori amos occassionally does. i don't know either why i keep associating tori with her.

STOP SHOUTING, ok, it's a little mean.

morrissey
Moderator
September 9th 2010


1688 Comments


Crazy aka it goes on for miles and following the interjections is somewhere between difficult and impossible. But crazy plot-wise too.

patriciojuan
September 9th 2010


18 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i'll try to avoid that next time. i got carried away i guess.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2014 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy