Every once in a while when songwriters find their hands full of unreleased ditties and uncatalogued material, a B-sides album comes out. The term B-sides comes from back in the vinyl days when you bought a single 7-inch record. The A-side would have the hit and there would be another track on the other side that didn’t quite make the album.
Alanis Morrisette, one of the century’s best songwriters, released the fittingly titled “Feast On Scraps” compilation of some of the songs that failed to make the cut on previous albums with a DVD disc documenting her last tour and studio adventures.
The songs on this disc might sound familiar, as they have been heavily played in Morrisette’s tours and have found their way onto bonus material on singles or MP3s. However, these versions are studio-constructed and sound just like an album.
The set opens with “Fear Of Bliss,” hitting hard from the start with a gritty sound and indicating Morrisette’s lyrical genius. The heavy-wording continues on “Bent 4 U” and the softer self-examination of “Sorry to Myself.”
The nine tracks include an acoustic version of the hit “Hands Clean” ending the set, but it sounds odd as songs like “Purgatorying” and “Sister Blister” are heavier Morrisette numbers. The standout track is “Unprodigal Daughter.”
If you are not an avid fan of Morrisette’s, then this CD is not recommended. “Feast On Scraps” does not contain any catchy lullabies or sing-along rock tunes.
The DVD disc contains live performances of Morrisette’s hits such as “Ironic,” “Head Over Feet” and “Uninvited.” The disc also takes us behind the scenes with interviews and on-the-road antics plus an emotionally draining session of Morrisette’s songwriting, an interesting documentry with lots of songs that will bring back memories.
“Feast On Scraps” is only recommended to the die-hard Morrisette fans as the audio section of it concentrates less on making hits and more on making good music. But no matter what Morrisette releases, it is probably better than the cookie-cutter of Michelle Branch or the sanitized punk of fellow Canadian Avril Lavigne.
Al-Qatami can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.