The first thing of note on 'To America', of course, is Joan's beautiful, breathy vocal. At once haunting and evocative, breezing over the gentle piano underpinning the song, Joan asks: "Is it right my love?/Is it right?/Are you happy inside your arms?/Can't you see your lover fall apart in her silk threads?" It's a striking image to open with.
The song takes a melancholy turn, as soft strains of violin soothe the soul and nestle in with the piano. Then the voice changes as long-time friend and supporter Rufus Wainwright joins in the fray. Though Wainwright sings well, the song would be better as a solo for the Policewoman, as it feels somewhat disjointed once Wainwright puts his falsetto to it, becoming a song of two halves rather than just the whole.
Next comes redemption. A sound that could be rolling drums or crashing waves comes rushing over the melody and out of nowhere a mini-celebration breaks out, with horns picking up the pace. "To America, America/Alone, alone/Alarm, alive," Joan sings, her beautiful lush vocals providing the song's best moment.
This is, then, perhaps a love letter to the States. Either way, it's more evidence of Wasser's shining talent. In fact, here she makes it seem effortless. It feels like a gift dropped nonchalantly into your lap - a gift that is more than welcome.