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Forty years into his recording career, John Hiatt has chosen to title his 22nd studio album, Terms of My Surrender. Surrender? Is that as in Cheap Trick? Or Appomattox? Hiatt laughs, tentatively, at the choice. ďItís my Appomattox,Ē he says, wryly. ďReally I donít know where it came from, that idea of trying to arrange the terms of my surrender. I donít get to do that. Itís a labor in vain in that respect, if you think you can negotiate that with anyone, or anything. In reference to the title song, itís in terms of love. Youíve got to give it up. The song says, ĎI canít negotiate the terms.íĒ
Thatís an essence, perhaps the essence, of the 11 songs here, the 11 stories they tell and, together perhaps, one story. Always a keen observer of lifeís flings and foibles alike, usually mixed well together, Hiattís insights and skills at sharing them have only sharpened over the years.