For years the received wisdom has been that Sinéad O’Connor is beyond her prime. Wisdom isn’t always wise, though, for on her tenth album she has at last produced a work that bursts through the mental fog that has stifled her output for so many years and once again raises her to a level of musical relevance that we all thought was long gone. No longer dwelling in the cesspit of post-prime, she’s getting finer with age – bringing contemplation, wisdom and a sense of optimism that is spun throughout every track in this pop album of personal rejuvenation.
Opening with ‘How About I Be Me’, she is making it clear from the start that this is a new Sinéad, a Sinéad who has finally found harmony in all aspects of life and is no longer running around in a daze trying to resist the pressures of fame, the industry and the public. As ‘Dense Water Deep Down’ says, it’s time “to be a real full woman”.
‘Take Me To Church’ is more than a passing reference to a superficial idea, but a nod to the universal search for meaning and harmony in life. From the album’s title to the last track ‘Streetcars’, Sinéad O’Connor makes it clear that this is no longer the voice and words of a young woman lost in the introverted existence of her own mind, but the sound of a fully blossomed being who has found spiritual meaning to life and is ready to begin a new chapter of creative existence. An existence that will hopefully bring more albums of similar quality.