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The Spirit Room

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Editors’ Notes

Seventeen year-old Michelle Branch impresses in a variety of ways on her 2001 debut The Spirit Room. Her vocals are assertive yet vulnerable, avoiding a strident tone without coming across as prissy. There are hints of Belinda Carlisle’s breezy style in her singing, as well as the urgency of Alanis Morissette. Branch’s songwriting is heartfelt and solid, rooted in classic pop with a few country elements added. Producer John Shanks surrounds her with bright contemporary sounds, adding a hip-hop groove here and an atmospheric synthesizer backdrop there. Romantic complications are Branch’s primary lyric focus, with “Everywhere,” “All You Wanted” and “Sweet Misery” oscillating between anticipation and disillusionment. She delivers an appealing anthem for teen misfits with “You Get Me” and gets likeably snarky on “If Only She Knew.” The luminous “Drop In the Ocean” balances such moments with its compelling spiritual undercurrent. The Spirit Room finds her opening creative doors and striding through with confidence.

Customer Reviews

One of the Best Albums Ever, IMHO

Definitely one of my favorite albums. I rated all the songs except one (the last) at LEAST four stars.

A Spiritual Experience

Amazing. Pure and simple. I've loved this album since it came out and I've never gotten sick of it. BEST SONGS: Everywhere, You Get Me, All You Wanted, You Set Me Free, Something to Sleep To, If Only She Knew

Ba da ba ba ba...I'm lovin' it!

I love all these songs on this album. I definitley love Drop In the Ocean, because it is a total surprise that she would change it up. All in all, great album.

Biography

Born: July 2, 1983 in Flagstaff, AZ

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Although she rose to fame during the teen pop era, Michelle Branch — who was 17 years old when her debut album, The Spirit Room, began its double-platinum run in 2001 — modeled her own songs after iconic alt-rock females like Lisa Loeb and Melissa Etheridge. Raised in Arizona, Branch sang throughout her childhood but didn’t pick up the guitar until her 14th birthday, when she received the instrument as a gift. Within a week, she’d written her first song. Branch’s parents eventually decided...
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The Spirit Room, Michelle Branch
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