“Slipstream” Bonnie Raitt
It takes Bonnie Raitt less than a minute into her new album before she belts out these lyrics: Now you’re mystified / Standing with the rest of us / Who used to rule the world. It’s a fitting open to her first studio album in more than six years and a not-so-subtle declaration that before big-voiced singers like Kelly Clarkson and Pink, there was Raitt.
Slipstream is infused with the blues. Raitt plays her trademark slide guitar on some of the best tracks – from that opener Used to Rule the World to the Dylan cover Million Miles and another new song, Split Decision.
Befitting a blues album, nearly all the songs contain the word love and feature simple beats that have you bobbing your head and tapping your toes after just a couple of listens. Quite a few of the songs were written years ago, after Raitt’s last studio album, Souls Alike.
The nine-time Grammy winner never overreaches with her voice and smartly lets the music breathe throughout. She sounds less interested in turning back the clock to her multi-platinum Luck of the Draw days than she does with sharing the wisdom she’s gathered in a career that’s lasted more than four decades.