NPR

Sinead O'Connor: Touching and Powerful

Sinead O'Connor.

One of the most controversial and acclaimed singers of the last 20 years, Sinead O'Connor continues to deny convention and expectations. From her groundbreaking breakthrough albums (1987's The Lion and the Cobra and 1990's I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got) through forays into everything from standards to reggae, O'Connor remains fiercely uncompromising.

It was I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got that made O'Connor a major star, due in no small part to its chart-topping cover of Prince's "Nothing Compares 2 U." But from there, she became an increasingly polarizing figure, as her political statements made her a lightning rod for criticism. Subsequent albums often won over fans, but met with increasingly sparse mainstream attention.

Her first record of new original material in seven years, 2007's Theology offers a touching and powerful examination of an undeniably passionate artist. The first disc, "Dublin Sessions," features eight new songs and three covers in an acoustic setting; the second, "London Sessions," features the same songs but with full-band arrangements.

"Something Beautiful"

"If You Had a Vineyard"

"We People Who Are Darker Than Blue"

This segment originally aired on July 19, 2007.

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