It’s 16 years since the Avalanches’ era-defining ‘Since I Left You’. How can a follow-up that took so long sound so meh?
London EC1 Barbican Theatre
Every day is a winding road, you know, love is a flame....
'Spirit' - yeuch! - is the Alaskan singer-songwriter's second LP, and her proclivity for syrupy platitudes can no longer be blamed on her barefaced farm-girl naivety. Jewel should have now seen enough of the world to know it isn't really like a fabric softener ad, and surely her brushes with the grubby flesh of rock'n'roll (Flea Chili Pepper plays bass on 'Barcelona') must have sullied her fwuffy wittle bubble.
No chance. This is a woman who can sing, "pooh pooh pi do" with a straight face. Someone who insists on warbling about how much she really wants to fly. With the Lord as her co-pilot. See, "We are given to God to bear our faith therein/But to be forgiven we must first believe in sin" ('Innocence Maintained'). 'Spirit' has about as much power to convert as a string of Sheryl Crow B-sides.
Even Jewel's holy chum in the firmament, if He has any taste at all, will look upon this album and see that it is evil. Nevertheless, it will sell millions.
A sequel that’s faster, flashier and more bombastic than the original
The sequel to Independence Day has been 20 years in the making, and it’s quite stupid but kinda fun
Minus Tom DeLonge, the pop-punk icons prove their worth on album seven
Mount returns both fearless and eccentric on bold new album