Shania Twain
Now


4.0
excellent

Review

by Lauren J. Paulson USER (11 Reviews)
October 1st, 2017 | 7 replies


Release Date: 2017 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A crossover masterwork that music fans will be listening to for some time in the future.

When culture confessions turns to the awkwardly named and hardly relevant term “pop-country,” inevitably the discussion circulates around two points: Shania Twain and Faith Hill. Certainly the terrain has become increasingly complex with modern singer-songwriters exploring the intersections of melodic pop, indie rock, and Americana in a way that blurs the distinctions between all of them.

The sound that Shania Twain made within the context of Dolly Parton wouldn’t seem anywhere near as fresh and interesting today as it did in 1990. But that’s history, that’s the way things work. The development of any genre or sound needs its pioneers, it needs focal points listeners can hold onto and examine as they figure out what’s going on (and if they like it). Unfortunately this also means that worthy contributors to the growth and popularization of “the sound” can be unfairly overlooked. Part curtains, turn on spotlight, enter to new Twain's album, "Now".

And these are powerful songs. They are also pure emotional songs. While Twain may have once found life to be sweet, "Now" seems to say maybe life ain’t so sweet. Album opener “Swingin' With My Eyes Closed” is a story of lost love adorned by banjo guitar and Shania's strong voice and a quiet electric guitar solo. “More Fun,” one of the more upbeat song on the album, starts with an expansive guitar run and pounding drums before settling down to let Shania drown our sorrows in her voice. The song is really a perfect hybrid of her early Americana work and the grandiose vision of her later solo work.

The real power on "Now" are the gentle semi-ballads. “Light of My Life” is all quiet heartbreak. “Now” is disappointment set to a shuffling beat. “Soldier” rises to a mid-tempo pace floating on a horn and piano while Twain sings about benders not taken and ways to escape what clings to the insides of our heads. The sole performance on the album of more Alanis Morisette-y “We Got Something They Don't” has Shania belting out the lyrics with passion. It’s a powerful testament to where she’s been. “You Can't Buy Love” is what country star’s semi-hit “I'm Alright” could have been if it hadn’t been polished to such a perfect 80’s pop gleam.

There isn’t a bad song on "Now". In a perfect world this album will pop up on a number of end of year top 10 lists. But as it is Shania's body of modern work will have to settle for being recognized as the best pop-country/Americana record to come out so far this decade. It’s a welcome return to form for one of the best voices working in any genre.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
Piglet
October 1st 2017


7843 Comments


I will be very surprised if this is any where near as good as her previous material

rasputin
October 1st 2017


14968 Comments


this won't impress me much

mvdu
October 1st 2017


776 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Somehow your other review got broken, so will repost my reply:



I agree with you. It’s not as effervescent as before (and likely couldn’t be the same after her vocal problems), but there is still plenty of energy. She still has a very good lower range that sounds older but wiser. The diversity of the album impressed me, though the production is a bit compact. “Home Now” reminds me of Paul Simon’s Graceland.

Digging: Pink - Hurts 2B Human

taylormemer
October 1st 2017


4962 Comments


"this won't impress me much"

Ooo snap!

Javastorm
October 2nd 2017


22 Comments


"this won't impress me much"

from this moment on
no one needs to know
i'm outta here!

jk, gonna check this out lmao

hasan
October 2nd 2017


922 Comments


good pop

Flugmorph
October 10th 2017


20989 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

"It's Monday and I hear you when you said that you hate that day

Me too but there's nothing much about we can do"



yeah this album is garbage



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