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Patti Smith: Peace And Noise
Patti Smith: Peace And Noise
turnover time:2024-06-25 04:51:37

After an eight-year absence, the widely revered Patti Smith made a strong return with 1996's Gone Again. So much attention was devoted to the simple fact that she had come back—having lost a brother, a husband (Fred "Sonic" Smith of MC5) and a best friend (photographer Robert Mapplethorpe) in the interim—that the haunting album almost seemed like an afterthought. Now that the novelty has worn off, this follow-up can just be seen for what it is, a damn fine slice of rock and roll that sounds as tireless as the artist herself. If Gone Again occasionally sounded restrained and tentative, the same cannot be said of Peace And Noise. Maybe her remarkably well-preserved voice has something to do with it, or maybe it's the impeccable musicianship of her backing band, but somehow Smith delivers an album that evokes her classic '70s work without sounding like a throwback. At her best, Smith has always found common ground between forceful poetry and undiluted rock spirit, and this album continues that tradition. Highlights include "1959," as well as "Blue Poles," which creates a country-tinged air of dread. The 10-minute improvisation "Memento Mori" will probably suffer by comparison to Horses' similarly structured "Medley," but it shouldn't; it's an edgy piece that should be praised for its daring if nothing else—who else would record a 10-minute improvisation over 20 years into his or her career If Patti Smith keeps it up, she may well be the most exciting, and important, comeback story of the decade.

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