Swing Set

Swing Set

2.0 1
by Ani DiFranco
     
 
The generous compilation of alternate versions and covers that the indefatigable Ani DiFranco appends to the third single from To the Teeth is the hook for Swing Set. "Swing" appears in its album version and an edit that excises the rap; in both versions, Maceo Parker's funky horn steals the

Overview

The generous compilation of alternate versions and covers that the indefatigable Ani DiFranco appends to the third single from To the Teeth is the hook for Swing Set. "Swing" appears in its album version and an edit that excises the rap; in both versions, Maceo Parker's funky horn steals the song. Then she overhauls her anti-gun diatribe "To the Teeth" as a spare, tense techno-inflected track. Last comes a trio of songs by classic protest singers. DiFranco covered Woody Guthrie's "Do Re Me" on the 'Til We Outnumber 'Em tribute album, and she reprises the track here, in a haunting live recording with Gillian Welch, David Rawlings, and Bo Ramsey. Her solo version of Phil Ochs's call-to-action ballad "When I'm Gone" previews a song that appears on the Steal This Movie soundtrack. Finally, she tackles Bob Dylan's "Hurricane." Although she can't match Dylan's bitter edge, DiFranco's rushed phrasing suits his epic surprisingly well. She puts herself in some heady company with these cover versions, and while her own compositions on this EP can't help but pale in comparison to their classics, Swing Set is still a convenient collection for DiFranco-philes.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
This EP gathers together various odds and ends: a radio edit of "Swing" from the To the Teeth album, shortened by eliminating Corey Parker's rap but with the funky rhythmic elements pushed up in the mix; a recasting of "To the Teeth" that, unfortunately, de-emphasizes the angry lyrics; and covers of Woody Guthrie, Phil Ochs, and Bob Dylan songs, each recast in characteristic DiFranco style. Of the last three, the one that works best is a version of "Hurricane" recorded for but not used in the film The Hurricane; Dylan's righteous anger works well in DiFranco's cutting interpretation. Her "Do Re Me" (sic) loses the irony Guthrie got out of it by matching the lyric to a jocular performance, and her "When I'm Gone" (different from the version used in the film Steal This Movie) loses Ochs' graceful, elegiac tone. But it's good to have such songs renewed through reinterpretation.
Rolling Stone - Tom Moon
Swinging, for real.

Product Details

Release Date:
07/25/2000
Label:
Righteous Babe
UPC:
0748731702021
catalogNumber:
20
Rank:
259966

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Swing Set 2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago