Song of the Day: Citizen of the Planet by Alanis Morissette

“Citizen Of The Planet, the album’s opener (Flavors of Entanglement ), is described by Rolling Stone Magazine as “Enya meets System Of A Down.” Strings and some Eastern instruments make up the verses, with Alanis appearing a bit more subdued than usual. The chorus kicks in with an intensity and fervor that makes you sit up and really listen. The contrast between the two parts really brings out the essence of the song, and it ranks up there with one of the best tunes on the album.” [sputnikmusic]

Lyrics:

I start up in the north
I grow from a special seed
I sprinkle it with sensibility
From French and Hungarian snow
I linger in the sprouting
Until my engine’s full

Then I move across the sea
To European bliss
To language of poets
As I cut the cord of home
I kiss my mother’s mother
Look to the horizon

Wide eyed, new ground
Humbled by my new surroundings

I am a citizen of the planet
My president is Guan Yin
My frontier is on an airplane
My prisons, homes for rehabilitating

Then I fly back to my rest
I fly back with my nuclear
But everything is different
So I wait
My yearn for home is broadened
Patriotism expanded
By callings from beyond

So I pack my things
Nothing precious
All things sacred

I am a citizen of the planet
My laws are all of attraction
My punishments are consequences
Separating from source the original sin

I am a citizen of the planet
Democracy’s kids are sovereign
Where the teachers are the sages
And pedestals filled with every parent

And so the next few years are blurry
The next decade’s a flurry
Of smells and tastes unknown
Threads sewn straight through this fabric
Through fields of every color
One culture to another

And I come alive
And I get giddy
And I am taken and globally naturalized

I am a citizen of the planet
From simple roots through high vision
I am guarded by the angels
And my body guides the direction I go in

I am a citizen of the planet
My favorite pastime edge stretching
Begotten with human condition
These ideals are born from my deepest within

……

Morissette has noted an expansion of her musical sound on Flavors of Entanglement, and that there are “more technological aspects to it on a sonic level” than previously. She said that because of her love for dancing, the album incorporates beats and loops that enable one to, in her words, “dance your face off”. She has described the album as “a combination of everything” in which she has a musical interest, including hip hop beats and organic instruments. Morissette has referred to the album as “techno-sounding but organic” and said, “I like fusion.” According toBillboard magazine, the album “balances world- and folk-influenced tracks against the experimental pop leanings of producer Guy Sigsworth”.

According to Morissette, the album features a “nice cross-section” of “joy and levity” similar to what is featured on her 2004 album, So-Called Chaos, and “[the] kind of rock bottom, ‘Holy shit, I am a broken woman’ moment.” She said that the album features songs about her own personal relationships, explaining that writing about them is her favourite activity “’cause it’s the only thing I can really comment on with any kind of conviction or authority.” The album incorporates themes involving both personal and political conflict, and Morissette explained that “Our emotions align themselves with larger symptomatic things in the world. We face a large war out there, but [the album] more closely reflects the war in people’s living rooms… the icy silence at home, versus the big cold war.” Morissette summarized the track “Moratorium” as being “essentially a song about my readiness to stop repeating bad patterns. I’ve kicked some of those in my life.” She said of “Not as We”, “You know how you can resist hitting rock bottom for a long time? That song just goes ‘OK, I’m going. All the way down'”.”Underneath” is about breakdowns in communication.

Musically, the album is a change from her previous music, which features pop rock and alternative rock music, but for example tracks like “On the Tequila” and “Giggling Again for No Reason”, the songs feature more dance-oriented music.

Alanis Morissette

Birth name Alanis Nadine Morissette
Born June 1, 1974 (age 39)
Origin Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Genres Alternative rock, post-grunge,pop rock, electronica
Occupations Singer, songwriter, actress, record producer
Instruments Piano, guitar, flute, harmonica,bass, vocals
Years active 1987–present
Labels MCA Canada, Maverick, Collective Sounds
Associated acts Tim Thorney
Website alanis.com

image by Carnegriff

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