Which Side Are You On?
Ani DiFranco’s 17th album is both a celebration of getting older and a renewal of faith in protest music. They’re not mutually exclusive on this well-executed but occasionally bland set. While Which Side Are You On? doesn’t specifically mention the Occupy movements, their shadows hang over the dozen songs, especially the title track, a 50-year-old protest number originally made popular by Pete Seeger, who, along with New Orleans musicians, joins DiFranco on the six-minute version here. The 41-year-old singer-songwriter channels different characters in various forms of disrepair who look back on their lives with regret and hope. They’re just as much about DiFranco as they are about the rest of us.