Sound — 8
Hotel Paper, Michelle Branch's third album, is filled with a range of songs from the beautifully acoustic 'It's You' to the angsty 'Are You Happy Now?' Several particularly radio friendly and catchy tracks, such as the second single to be released from the album, Breathe and Find Your Way Back. One noteworthy track is the amazing Empty Handed on which a 22 piece orchestra is featured. Personally, my favourite track is the pure slice of melancholy that is 'Til I Get Over You, a beautiful song that highlights just how far Branch has come since The Spirit Room. My only complaint would be that some of the tracks have been over produced such as Hotel Paper and One Of These Days. Although beautiful, these two tracks would have been more moving if just simply guitar and piano respectively.
Lyrics — 10
This album showcases Michelle's evident and raw talent and way with words Some of the lyrics are simplistic, others have a surface meaning, but when one looks closer you can see the true depth. The title track of the album is a very exceptional song with moving lyrics that are easy to relate to. I feel that this is part of what makes Branch so popular, she has this ability to reach right to the root of what she is feeling and write about it. Fans across the globe find it possible to connect with Michelle through her increasingly mature lyrics.
Overall Impression — 10
An impressive selection of songs, which are clearly a vehicle for Branch's emotions. After the success of The Spirit Room, Michelle had a lot to live up to with the third album. I think she succeeded in delivering an album which is just as good as it's predecessor if not better. Through this album, Michelle Branch shows the world just how truly talented she is. Many may compare her to Avril Lavigne especially after hearing Are You Happy Now? however there really is no contest - Branch's lyrics are deep and meaningful, much more mature than that of Lavigne Definitely an album worth buying and which will stand the test of time.