Laws of Illusion

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Laws of Illusion
Studio album by Sarah McLachlan
Released June 11, 2010 (US)
June 15, 2010 (Canada)
Recorded 2008–2010
Genre Pop, pop rock
Length 49:14
Label Nettwerk (Canada)
Arista (US)
Producer Pierre Marchand
Sarah McLachlan chronology
Wintersong
(2006)
Laws of Illusion
(2010)
Singles from Laws of Illusion
  1. "Loving You is Easy"
    Released: April 23, 2010
  2. "Forgiveness"
    Released: September 7, 2010[1]
  3. "Illusions of Bliss"
    Released: February 4, 2011

Laws of Illusion is the seventh studio album by Canadian singer-songwriter Sarah McLachlan. It was released on June 11, 2010 on Arista Records in the United States and June 15, 2010 on Nettwerk in Canada. Recording for the album took place in Montreal and Vancouver and production was handled by Pierre Marchand, with whom McLachlan has frequently collaborated in the past.[2]

According to McLachlan, her original idea for the album's title was Loss and Illusion, but she chose the final title when she proposed the original title to Marchand and he misunderstood her, hearing Laws of Illusion instead.[3]

Release[edit]

Customers who pre-ordered the album through sarahmclachlan.com were given "exclusive pre-access" to tickets to the 2010 Lilith Fair along with an instant download of McLachlan's song "One Dream", which she wrote for the Vancouver Winter Olympics.[2]

Singles[edit]

"Loving You Is Easy" was released on April 23, 2010.[4][5] McLachlan's official website announced the track listing on May 14, 2010.[6] "Loving You Is Easy" debuted at number 28 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary Songs on the week of May 29, 2010 and has risen to number 14 as of July 17, 2010.[7] The song also debuted at number 38 on the Billboard Adult Top 40 on the week of June 26, 2010.[8] "Loving You Is Easy" debuted at number 86 on the Billboard Canadian Hot 100 on the week of June 12, 2010[9] It has so far peaked at number 59.

Chart performance[edit]

Laws of Illusion debuted at number 2 on the Canadian album charts, selling 22,000 copies in its first week of release.[10] The album debuted at #3 on the Billboard 200, selling 94,000 copies in its first week of release and selling an additional 38,000 copies in its second week.[11][12] The album has been less successful in the UK, debuting at #76.[13] In Australia, the album debuted at #12, making it her highest charting album there.[14] The album sold over 450,000 copies in USA and over 50,000 copies in Canada.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars
Rolling Stone 2/5 stars
SputnikMusic 4/5 stars
Slant 2/5 stars
Entertainment Weekly 4/5 stars[15]
Los Angeles Times 2.5/4 stars[16]
Boston Globe 4/5 stars[17]
New York Times 4/5 stars[18]

Laws of Illusion received generally favorable reviews upon its release, with a Metacritic score of 65 out of 100. Allmusic noted that the album "furthers the fantasy by taking its cues from dated Clinton-era folk-pop. It’s an album that aims to soothe rather than startle, replete with wistful, lovelorn lyrics and McLachlan’s signature arrangements — a mix of new age atmospherics and singer/songwriter ambience — courtesy of longtime record producer Pierre Marchand."[19] Rolling Stone gave the album a negative review, stating that "Sarah McLachlan's first disc since splitting from her husband, Ashwin Sood, feels scattered: The carefree single 'Loving You Is Easy' feels out of place. The rest alternates between vulnerability and bitterness, using the same sighs and moans with which she used to convey ecstasy."[20] SputnikMusic gave the album 4 stars and praised McLachlan's musical return to the style she explored in her earlier albums, such as Surfacing, Touch and Solace.[21] Slant gave the album rather negative review noting that "Laws of Illusion sounds both effortless and effort-less."[22]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Awakenings"   Sarah McLachlan 4:08
2. "Illusions of Bliss" (·) McLachlan, Pierre Marchand 3:53
3. "Loving You Is Easy" (·) McLachlan 3:03
4. "Changes"   McLachlan, Marchand 3:44
5. "Forgiveness" (·) McLachlan, Marchand 3:49
6. "Rivers of Love" (·) McLachlan, Marchand 3:54
7. "Love Come" (·) McLachlan 3:33
8. "Out of Tune"   McLachlan, Marchand 3:51
9. "Heartbreak"   McLachlan, Marchand 4:07
10. "Don't Give Up on Us"   McLachlan, Marchand 3:37
11. "U Want Me 2"   McLachlan, Marchand 4:07
12. "Bring on the Wonder"   Susan Enan 3:24

"·" Tracks that feature piano versions/video on Deluxe Edition

  • Japanese Edition Includes 2 Bonus Tracks - "Loving You Is Easy" (Acoustic), "One Dream"

Personnel[edit]

Credits for Laws of Illusion adapted from Allmusic.[23]

Musicians
  • Sarah McLachlan – guitar (acoustic), piano, composer, glockenspiel, harmonium, vocals, vocals (background), wurlitzer
  • Matt Chamberlain – percussion, drums
  • Colin Cripps – guitar (acoustic), guitar (electric), vocals (background)
  • Yves Desrosiers – guitar (acoustic), guitar (alectric), lap steel guitar, slide bass
  • Bill Dillon – guitar (acoustic), guitar (electric)
  • Luke Doucet – guitar (acoustic), dobro, guitar (electric), vocals (background)
  • Robbie Kuster – percussion, drums, vocals (background)
  • J.F. Lemieux – bass, vocals (background)
  • Catherine Lesaunier – cello
  • Maxime St-Pierre – trumpet, flugelhorn
  • Pierre Marchand – guitar (acoustic), bass, composer, glockenspiel, harmonium, keyboards, vocals (background), producer, engineer, mixing, tack piano
  • Michel Pepin – guitar (acoustic), guitar (electric)
Technical personnel
  • Chris Potter – engineer
  • Kharen Hill – photography, cover photo, tray photo
  • Raphael Mazzucco – photography
  • John Rummen – design
  • Pascal Shefteshy – engineer, mixing assistant
  • Adam Ayan – mastering
  • Fred Bouchard – pro-tools

Release history[edit]

Date Type Label Catalog #
June 15, 2010 CD (Barnes & Noble Exclusive) Arista 72629
CD RCA 55367
CD/DVD (U.S. Deluxe Edition) 71991
LP 73963
LP 8869755367
CD (Canadian Edition) Nettwerk 0670030895
CD/DVD (Canadian Deluxe Edition) 30903
June 21, 2010 CD (U.K.) Arista 88697553672
CD/DVD (U.K.) 88697719912

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Sarah McLachlan News and Blog | The Official Sarah McLachlan Site". Sarahmclachlan.com. Retrieved 2012-02-27. 
  2. ^ a b Kevin Richards (March 18, 2010). "Sarah McLachlan Eyes Return With The Laws Of Illusion". American Songwriter. Retrieved March 30, 2010. 
  3. ^ "‘I’m not the girl I was’". The Globe and Mail, June 11, 2010.
  4. ^ Billboard - 3 Apr 2010 - Page 32 "The single “Loving You Is Easy,” released as a stream two weeks ago, “in particular is extremely lighthearted,” she says. “I would almost go as far as to say really happy.”"
  5. ^ "New Sarah McLachlan Single On Sale Now". RTTNews. Retrieved May 16, 2010. 
  6. ^ "Laws of Illusion Tracklisting". sarahmclachlan.com. May 14, 2010. Retrieved May 19, 2010. 
  7. ^ "Billboard Adult Contemporary Songs, week of July 17, 2010". billboard.com. Retrieved July 12, 2010. 
  8. ^ "Billboard Adult Pop Songs, week of June 26, 2010". billboard.com. Retrieved June 21, 2010. 
  9. ^ ""Loving You Is Easy" by Sarah McLachlan (Song History on Billboard.com)". billboard.com. Retrieved June 21, 2010. 
  10. ^ Caulfield, Keith. "Drake beats McLachlan to No. 1". June 26, 2010.
  11. ^ Caulfield, Keith. "Drake Debuts At No. 1 on Billboard 200". billboard.com. June 23, 2010.
  12. ^ Caulfield, Keith. "Eminem's Huge 'Recovery' Leads Big Week On Billboard 200". billboard.com. June 30, 2010.
  13. ^ "Official UK Albums Top 100 - 3rd March 2012 | The UK Charts | Top 40 | Official Charts Company". Theofficialcharts.com. Retrieved 2012-02-27. 
  14. ^ "Australia's Official Music Charts". ARIA Charts. 2012-02-20. Retrieved 2012-02-27. 
  15. ^ Jon Dolan (June 9, 2010). ""Laws of Illusion" on Entertainment Weekly". ew.com. Retrieved June 22, 2010. 
  16. ^ Margaret Wappler (June 15, 2010). ""Laws of Illusion" on Los Angeles Times". latimes.com. Retrieved June 22, 2010. 
  17. ^ Sarah Rodman (June 14, 2010). ""Laws of Illusion" on Boston Globe". boston.com. Retrieved June 22, 2010. 
  18. ^ Jon Pareles (June 13, 2010). ""Laws of Illusion" on New York Times". nytimes.com. Retrieved June 22, 2010. 
  19. ^ Andrew Leahey. ""Laws of Illusion" on AllMusic". allmusic.com. Retrieved June 21, 2010. 
  20. ^ Barry Walters. ""Laws of Illusion" on Rolling Stone Music". rollingstone.com. Retrieved June 21, 2010. 
  21. ^ Trey Spencer. ""Laws of Illusion" on SputnikMusic". sputnikmusic.com. Retrieved June 22, 2010. 
  22. ^ Jonathan Keefe. ""Laws of Illusion" on Slant Magazine". slantmagazine.com. Retrieved June 22, 2010. 
  23. ^ "Credits for "Laws of Illusion"". allmusic.com. Retrieved June 21, 2010.