Sanka Venti – with a double shot of sell-out – for Joni Mitchell

Posted August 27th, 2007 by Logan Young · 1 Comment

We’ve all said stuff at times that we didn’t really mean (e.g. “I’ll never drink that much again,” “That new Rihanna jam is twee as fuck,” “Sure honey, I’d love to have breakfast at Denny’s with your parents on my only day off,” “What’s so bad about Sum 41?”), but I guess I just hold Joni Mitchell to a higher standard than most. So I was more than a tad bit crestfallen to hear that the Canuck’s newest disc since 1998’s Taming the Tiger would be brought to us by the bad-meaning-bad not bad-meaning-good peeps over at your suspiciously friendly neighborhood Starbucks…all 47 of ‘em. A mere five years ago, Joan Baez’s worst nightmare told the sycophants over at Jann Wenner’s douche rag that she’d never record another album for another major label.

“I’ll be damned if I’ll line their pockets,” the indignant, sometimes (mostly derivative) painter said.

Well, I hate to be the one to break it to Mrs. Roberta Anderson, but Starbucks’ Hear Music label – which as 800-pound laissez faire gorillas are prone to do, outright bought the soul of the former catalog-only company back in 1999 for Allah only knows what – is one of thee biggest distributors of traditional, hold-it-in-your-grubby-little-hands CDs in all of Christendom.

First, it was that all-acoustic Alanis Morrisette treacle – going down on Uncle Joey in a theatre without Glen Ballard’s plug-ins is like Seals without Crofts, East coast without the LBC or Van Halen sans Michael Anthony’s Old No. 7 bass. Next it was that duets disc that cashed in on the Ray Charles is dead/let’s celebrate like K.C. and The Sunshines hard-on. (Him and Johnny Mathis doing “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” is about as listenable as Bing and Bowie bantering and butchering X-mas carols.) Then, and here’s the kicker, Thurston Moore tells Pitchfork that he’s curetting a celebrity-picked mix tape of his band’s art school noise for the fart skooled boys who just can’t start their day of popped-collar grab ass without a steaming cup of eight-dollar joe – ‘cause I’ve always wondered what Portia de Rossi’s favorite part of “Teen Age Riot” is. In the end, I guess it’s perfect logic that the twits that made Sir Paul prance around in Chuck Taylors strumming that cheeky mandolin also convinced Joni to re-record “Big Yellow Taxi” for topical reasons and have Herbie Hancock play keys on Rudyard Kipling’s incredibly inane “If.” For what it’s worth, here’s the track listing for Shine available anywhere “Grande” means small September 25th:

1. “One Week Last Summer”

2. “This Place

3. “If I Had A Heart

4. “Hana”

5. “Bad Dreams Are Good”

6. “Big Yellow Taxi”

7. “Night of the Iguana”

8. “Strong and Wrong”

9. “Shine”

10. “If”

Thanks a lot Seattle. Not only did you bless us with Singles and hoards upon whores of ersatz Nirvanas (have you heard the new Silverchair album and not thrown up in your mouth?), but now we have a new Joni Mitchell record that’s so environmentally green it smells like Kermit’s dick. It reminds me of that scene in the Austin Powers sequel:

Austin: “This coffee tastes like shit.”

Basil: “It is shit.”

Worse yet, she’s signed a two disc deal. Three cheers for Shartfucks!

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