After declaring herself retired in 2002, Mitchell makes a stunning return on her first album of new material since 1998s Taming the Tiger. The spare and elegant, if typically eccentric, soundscape counters the weighty topics. With anger and anxiety, and sometimes resignation, she looks at war, environmental decay and governmental corruption, ending on a defiant and optimistic note in her closing recasting of Rudyard Kiplings If. The curveball is a feisty update of Big Yellow Taxi, with tree museum admission adjusted for inflation (And they charged all the people an arm and a leg just to see em).
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