The inlay to Pulp’s Different Class memorably told listeners not to read the lyrics while listening to the album. For Joanna Newsom’s third record, each song’s lyric is so long, beautifully phrased – “Even the ghosts huddled up for warmth,” she whispers on Autumn – and dense with detail that it’s difficult to keep up without study aids. Suffice to say, not many records in 2010 will contain phrases like “faultlessly etiolated”. The music, as anyone who devoured 2006’s Ys will expect, is equally open to exposition. Ryan Francesconi’s arrangements may be subtle – Newsom’s harp remains central almost throughout – but they perfectly complement the looking-glass mystique of compositions like Good Intentions Paving Company and Jackrabbits. At two-hours-plus, it’s a record that demands concentration to appreciate its splatterings of beauty. But pour yourself a glass and listen, because they don’t make them like this too often. Grand, long and bold – Newsom makes it sound like the first word she sings here: easy.