Home Read Classic Album Review: Juliana Hatfield | In Exile Deo

Classic Album Review: Juliana Hatfield | In Exile Deo

The pop-rocker serves up her most consistently appealing work in over a decade.


This came out in 2004 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


Juliana Hatfield doesn’t do herself (or her listeners) many favours.

For more than a decade, she’s been one of the most gifted singer-songwriters in indie-rock — and one of the most inconsistent. From one album to the next, you never know what you’re going to get: Happy Juliana or heartbroken Juliana, rocking Juliana or mellow Juliana, cheesed-off Juliana or forgiving Juliana. So it’s a treat to report that on her seventh studio album In Exile Deo, Hatfield has finally pulled herself together and made a disc that lives up to her potential.

Kicking off with the one-two punch of the scrappily punky Get In Line and the darkly groovy Jamie’s In Town, Hatfield quickly hits her stride and serves up her most appealing work in over a decade — a dozen tracks brimming with cathartic guitars, big hooks, strong melodies and plenty of attitude.

Even when she ventures into balladland, Juliana doesn’t wimp out — burnished, jangly cuts like Some Rainy Sunday and Singing In The Shower retain an edgy energy often MIA from Hatfield’s softer side. And just to complete the picture, Stones-like hip-swivellers like Because We Love You and It Should Have Been You are delivered with more seductive swagger than she’s shown in a long time.

In other words, Hatfield has finally done herself a favour with the superior In Exile Deo. Now do yourself — and her — a favour and go buy it.