Saturday, August 11, 2007

338. Joni Mitchell - The Hissing Of Summer Lawns (1975)

Track Listing

1. In France They Kiss On Main Street
2. Jungle Line
3. Edith And The Kingpin
4. Don't Interrupt The Sorrow
5. Shades Of Scarlet Conquering
6. Hissing Of Summer Lawns
7. Boho Dance
8. Harry's House
9. Sweet Bird
10. Shadows And Light


So this is an album which represents an important shift for Mitchell's music. Maybe it's me but I don't think the shift is enough. You know, either Joni kept going the way she was going or she really would make a different album. This seems a bit half baked.

Some songs are completely different from what Joni has done before like Jungle Line, a Moog and Burundi Warrior drums track is certainly novel. But then some of the other songs, actually the majority of the songs on the album are traditional Mitchell. I have nothing against traditional Mitchell mind, it's just that the album comes off as a bit tentative, neither a part of the last few albums or something actually new. It is a bit undecided, it is all about the process of figuring out what to do next.

That said, each individual track is pretty great here, the lyrics are amazing, it is Joni Mitchell after all. In the end this is an essential pivotal record for Mitchell but maybe not her best, it is more important as a document of Mithcell's creative process than as actual pieces of music.

Track Highlights

1. Jungle Lines
2. Shadows And Light
3. Shades Of Scarlet Conquering
4. Edith And The Kingpin

Final Grade



From Wikipedia:

The album was not as radio-friendly as Mitchell's earlier work, and despite the album attaining initial commercial success, reaching #4 on the charts and quickly going gold, contemporary reviewers were not entirely kind.

Prince once remarked that The Hissing of Summer Lawns was "the last album [he] loved all the way through" at the time of the interview, a 1985 Rolling Stone article. The album is number 90 on the German Spex magazine's list of the 100 best albums of the 20th century.

Joni Anderson (later Mitchell) In a Mighty Wind type show in 1965:

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