Morissette: Under Rug Swept
By: Lauren Jonik (firstname.lastname@example.org)
While many artists use
their work to define themselves, truly great creative minds strive
to remain undefinable--- ever open to whatever paths their own evolution
and growth will lead them to. As some critics were content to label
Morissette as "the angry young woman" on the heels
of the success of Jagged Little Pill, she was exploring her
own stillness and spirituality--- themes reflected on Supposed
Former Infatuation Junkie, released in 1998 on Maverick Records.
Her most recent offering, Under Rug Swept, came into the
world in February 2002, and once again demonstrated her commitment
to artistic openness and musical development.
Taking her involvement
to a new level, Alanis self-produced the eleven tracks on the album
and invited several notable guests to join her. While Meshell
Ndege'Ocello played bass on So Unsexy and You Owe
Me Nothing In Return, Flea from the Red
Hot Chili Peppers added the bass on Narcissus. Stone
Temple Pilots' Dean Deleo contributed to the guitar parts on
Precious Illusions and 21 Things I Want In A Lover.
On Under Rug Swept,
Alanis Morissette continues to explore her gift for unique lyrical
phrasing, as evidenced in That Particular Time. "I've
always wanted for you, What you've wanted for yourself, And yet
I wanted to save us high water or hell." Hands Clean,
the first single from which the album's title was mined, tells the
tale of lovers who view the same relationship differently in hindsight.
"What part of our history's reinvented and under rug swept?
What part of your memory is selective and tends to forget?"
Precious Illusions, the second single released, is a daring
admission of making a conscious decision to grow beyond the things
that hold us back within ourselves once the realization dawns that
they no longer serve our true well-being. "But this won't work
as well as it once did, Cuz I want to decide between survival and
bliss, And though I know who I am not, I still don't know who I
am, But I know I won't keep playing the victim."
Perhaps, the album's
most powerful and beautiful truth is given in You Owe Me Nothing
In Return. "You owe me nothing in return for the love that
I give, You owe me nothing in return for the caring I have, I give
you thanks for receiving, it's my privilege, And you owe me nothing
in return." Often, the best gifts we offer or receive are those
attached only with freedom.