"The cliché has it that a musician has many years to write their first album, and a few months to come up with their second. As it happened, close to 40 years separated Alice Bag's first single with her iconic punk band the Bags and the release of her first solo album (and first full-length release ever), 2016's Alice Bag, and her passionate, thoughtful music certainly speaks to her rich, diverse life experiences. That LP was one of the best albums of the year, and anyone expecting a sophomore slump from Bag gets shut down thoroughly with her second solo effort, 2018's Blueprint. The album plays like a continuation of the sound and themes of her debut, but if anything, Bag sounds even more forceful and confident on Blueprint, going from strength to strength, and her vocal work here is superb, mixing a rock & roller's punch with an R&B diva's flexibility and control. As a songwriter, she remains smart, perceptive, and unpretentiously literate, telling tales that have the ring of truth whether she's ranting about economic injustice against women ("77"), spinning the sad tale of alcoholics losing control of their lives ("Invisible"), or pondering the hard work of understanding yourself ("Stranger"). Musically, Blueprint jumps from buzzy old-school punk and anthemic rock & roll to sinewy R&B and moody, introspective pop, and Bag sounds assured and authoritative at every turn. A few of her well-known friends contribute to Blueprint, including Kathleen Hanna (of Bikini Kill and the Julie Ruin), Allison Wolfe (of Bratmobile), Teri Gender Bender (of Les Butcherettes), and Francisca Valenzuela, but Bag commands the spotlight throughout, and working with producer Lysa Flores, she's given these performances a sound that allows passion and craft to bring out the best in each one. And at a time when so much seems uncertain in America and around the world, "Turn It Up" is the rousing wake-up call we could all use. If Alice Bag was an unexpected triumph, Blueprint confirms that album's excellence was no fluke, and as she approaches 60 years of age, Alice Bag is one of the most exciting and compelling new artists currently making music. Let's hope she has another album this good in her to make this a hat trick."
AllMusic Review by Mark Deming