Honesty is the best policy on Joan As Police Woman's fifth album, Damned Devotion.Play It Again Sam, 2018
6.3 / 10
Whether or not Joan Wasser is doing her thing as Joan As Police Woman, she’s keeping herself busy. This means working with such artists as Sufjan Stevens, Lau, RZA and most recently Daniel Johnston. She’s in demand so to speak. However, her own albums as Joan A Police Woman usually receive responses in the middle. Nothing since 2006’s Real Life has scored universal kudos. But the press for Wasser’s fifth album, Damned Devotion, declares it to be her best. Perhaps because the songs are Joan at her most honest. “My maxim is: if it feels scary to say it, it’s the thing you must say,” she says.
This translates to songs like “The Silence”, which rides off a rallying cry of “My body, my choice, her body, her choice.” Because social movements are the THING it seems in music now. But then there are also songs about relationships and confronting conflict head-on or at least putting it off until later (“Talk About It Later”). Wasser’s lyrics are strong for sure and fit nice in the smoky atmosphere that Damned Devotion creates. However, it’s a bit too soft at times; suggesting that Wasser had much scarier things to say and she didn’t say them.