Sinead O'Connor's characteristically blunt and confrontational foray into social media six months ago quickly spun into a disconcerting Twitter-based sideshow. Fortunately, the uncompromising Irish singer's ninth studio album finds her in a more triumphant mood, full of the impish humour, girlish glee, bluster and clenched-jaw resolve that have made her so captivating.
The angriest tracks do not disappoint: protest song Take Off Your Shoes rips apart the Vatican over sexual abuse cover-ups; she dispenses with self-important celebrity culture on the searing, stripped-down hymnal V.I.P.; and belts scornfully over power chords on a stirring cover of John Grant's Queen Of Denmark.
But it's the gentler moments that make the record so engaging. The warm harmonies, disarming humour and empathy in O'Connor's voice fill each song with vibrancy and character. Her best album in more than a decade.
Top track: The Wolf Is Getting Married