With an Academy Award and 2 Grammy’s under her belt, along with many other accolades, powerhouse Melissa Etheridge is back with her 13th studio album, This Is M.E.; the first release on her own independent label. On top form throughout this new collection, Etheridge showcases her incredible range and song writing capabilities over this brand new 15 track record.
Opening up with the very infectious I Won’t Be Alone Tonight, the track sets the tone for This Is M.E. The deep beat, strong vocals and catchy melody is a perfect introduction to the record and the tracks to follow, with A Little Hard Hearted and Do It Again continuing on within a similar stride. We also hear a grittier side to the album with Monster, Ain’t That Bad, Like A Preacher and Stranger Road incorporating some sinister rock riffs than its neighboring inclusions.
The tracklisting here comes with plenty of attitude to create some infectiously powerful catalogue additions that continue to showcase the authority Etheridge demands through her music. That is until the emotional epic that is Who Are You Waiting For begins, demanding a different kind of attention. Feeling like a grand score from an uplifting musical, the passion radiates through the tune as Etheridge uses such a subtle, beautiful melody as the base for her smooth croon, which would have been such a touching finale track.
Sentiment is cast aside for bonus tracks Favourite Song and closing number Saturday Night which prompt a different feel entirely. Both tracks are playful and funky rather than striking and raw and sit quite contrasting to the rest of the record.
Overall This Is M.E. does have a little bit of everything and while there’s so much strength in individual tracks as well as having a powerful vocal constant throughout the record, these similarities do tend to lose their individuality when played on a loop.