McLachlan warms the soul

McLachlan warms the soul

It's been seven years since the double-platinum Afterglow, or any original material, but Canadian singer-songwriter Sarah McLachlan is back. Laws of Illusion mirrors a journey of love starting with the euphoria of love won, losing oneself in illusions of bliss and finally learning to let go.

McLachlan has had a rollercoaster life over the last few years, tying the knot, ending that marriage and raising two young daughters. That hasn't affected her breathtaking voice, but has certainly added complexity to her emotional expression. Laws of Illusion can be seen as an autobiographical interpretation of love lost and found.

The album opens with electronic chill-out track Awakenings. But the angry, guitar-heavy piece is unique on the record, with most tracks falling into a similar genre as first single Loving You Is Easy. This floats along to a bouncy piano and drum backing, and a sweetly delivered chorus of 'Loving you is wondrous and pure/How long must I wait 'til I see your smile?' Later tracks like Forgiveness and Rivers of Love are soothing numbers which are perfect after a long, tiring day.

The songs have been thoughtfully ordered, moving from a dynamic opening to the calm of closer Love Come.

Laws of Illusion is not, perhaps, ideal summer listening, but its bittersweet message warms the corners of the soul.

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