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A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this music.
What parents need to know
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
On AFTERGLOW, her first studio album since 1997, Sarah McLachlan doesn't offer a lot of surprises. She does deliver a collection of sweetly sung ballads, produced with taste and restraint. It might be worth pointing out to your kids that Sarah wrote all the songs on this album, and plays piano and guitar as well. In an age of prancing pre-fab navel-pierced pop divas, it's refreshing to come across a female artist who performs her own original songs, accompanies herself on piano and guitar, and puts across the not-so-subtle message that her music is more important than her outfits or dance moves.
Is it any good?
Sarah McLachlan's voice was made for lullabies, and she sounds best on the simpler, more delicate tunes. The occasional rebellious lyric ("I'm a train wreck waiting to happen...a wildfire born of frustration" or "I have to push just to see how far you'll go"), sung against layers of strings and choral-sounding background vocals, make for the most interesting moments. But whatever the lyric or tune, McLachlan's competent musicianship and gentle aesthetic are refreshing and welcome.