The most polarising figure in music returns with – what else? – a three-CD, 18-track, two-hour song cycle.
Californian singer/harpist Joanna Newsom doesn’t do things by halves, as this immense, elusive LP attests.
Have One On Me is less exhausting than Ys, which was dragged down by overbearing orchestral arrangements and Newsom’s wearying vocal tics.
Both have been toned down considerably, and the effect is beguiling.
The arrangements give Newsom’s songs the room they need to breathe, and her cultured, careful vocals are a world apart from her trademark shrieking.
There’s plenty to say about the record, which will reveal more with repeated listens.
It’s the sound of a singer growing not just more confident in her work but also, simply, growing better at it.
Have One On Me is unlikely to convert anyone who despised her previous records.
But if you’re on the fence, this is when you should jump off it.