Ani DiFranco - Educated Guess

Music Reviews Ani DiFranco
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Ani DiFranco - Educated Guess

A theme of sorts for DiFranco’s latest is laid out in “Origami,” when she declares, “I am an all-powerful Amazon warrior / Not just some sniveling girl / So, no matter what I think I need / You know I can’t possibly have a need in this world.” Hear her roar. And hear her do it alone. Educated Guess is DiFranco’s first true solo record in 13 years. She produces, plays all the instruments, sings all lead and backing vocals and handles all recording and mixing. She’s the living embodiment of the independent woman Beyoncé and her crew sang about a few years ago. Only not as danceable. Or as funky. Or, frankly, as interesting. Spotted with spoken-word tracks—like the rambling “Grand Canyon,” which veers from a patriotic rumination to a treatise on feminism—and the usual moments of confessional clarity, Educated Guess is the restless DiFranco being the folkiest she’s been in a decade. She’s aggressive on “Bubble,” both musically and lyrically. And in “Swim,” she once again declares independence—literally, figuratively, does it really matter at this point? What matters is that she’s good at it. Then again, she’s been working on it for 14 years.

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