Picks and Pans Review: Faith and Courage

UPDATED 07/03/2000 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 07/03/2000 at 01:00 AM EDT

Sinéad O'Connor (Atlantic)

Album of the week

As a celebrity, Sinead O'Connor can be exasperating. Whether tearing up the Pope's photo on Saturday Night Live (in 1992) or declaring herself a priest and adopting the name Mother Bernadette Marie, she's done plenty to rile the public. O'Connor acknowledges her bad-girl reputation here on "The Lamb's Book of Life," a Celtic-meets-hip-hop track in which she admits, "I know I have done many things/To give you reason not to listen to me." She may not know how to behave, but this album shows she's still capable of creating some of the best music in pop. Assisted by an array of gifted producers, including Wyclef Jean, Kevin "She'kspere" Briggs and Dave Stewart, O'Connor sings with passion and purpose in these songs about love and spiritual searching.

Bottom Line: Full of fire

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