NEW MUSIC EAR'S FAVOURITES - TORI AMOS "LITTLE EARTHQUAKES"

THESE ALBUM REVIEWS ARE FAVOURITES FROM MY OWN VAST AND VARIED ECLECTIC COLLECTION! I AM A FAN OF THESE ARTISTS SO MY OPINIONS MAY NOT BE ON A PAR WITH YOUR OWN BUT PLEASE ENJOY AND MAYBE THERE ARE SOME ALBUMS YOU MAY LIKE TO SAMPLE FOR YOURSELF OUT OF CURIOSITY :)

TORI AMOS


 "LITTLE EARTHQUAKES"
 
 
I first saw Tori Amos on some TV show, I can't remember which one, and I thought how intriguing this lady was.  A mass of red hair, legs astride a piano stool, with an organ behind and a piano in front.  This quirky yet attractive lady was writhing her legs in a playfully sexy way, curling her pouty red lips and singing the most pure and sultry whispered vocal around sometimes manic Rock keyboards and sometimes slow and Classical.  I bought this album and every album since, until "Cornflake Girl" became a big hit the UK hadn't caught this alternative singer songwriter just yet.

Although "Crucify" became Tori's breakout single as it reached number 15, she had dallied with the Top 30 with "China" and "Winter".  One of my favourites of Tori's is "Silent All These Years", amazingly the worst placing from the singles off this set.  Its quiet minimal piano and beautiful vocals reminiscent of Sarah McLachlan and to an extent Kate Bush.  Its such a lovely song.  "Crucify" has a little more punch with a slight drum beat and a 70s Psychedelic Rock segment and harmonising vocals.  "China" is another piano ballad, with soft whispering vocal verses leading into a crescendo chorus and back down again.  A very romantic song about a distnt lover who doesn't share her views on the relationship.  "Winter" written about her relationship with her minister father is an absolute gem, as with most of Tori's songs you can pick up the motion and sense this is autobiographical.  Tori is not afraid of any subject however tough it may be, as we find out on this album.


"Girl" has a little orchestration and light drumbeat as well as Tori's unmistakeable vocals and keyboard skills, it also has a kind of Progressive/Psychedelic Rock middle segment.  

"Precious Things" has a quicker pace, a frantic piano with a more powerful Rock drumbeat and with screeching vocal accompaniment and a range of other atmospheric vocals.  This is a darker track, a powerful angry emotive track that us fans have grown accustomed to over the years.

"Happy Phantom" is one of those funny, bright and breezy Tori tracks that even if the lyrics are somewhat strange and maybe dark you can't help but smile, she has this given talent for music composition.  I think its her thinking how her death would impact on a lover or so I read somewhere.

Tori makes light of one of the most traumatic experiences of anyone's life, her rape at knifepoint, maybe its her way of dealing with it, the song is light but the lyrics if you listen closely are quite dark on "Leather".  "Me And A Gun" is a more vivid recollection of the whole ordeal, just Tori singing a cappella, this was released as a debut single but "Silent All These Years" the B-side was preferred.  The former is is bright and positive while the latter is quite disturbing and you feel sad that Tori or any woman has been put through this.

"Mother" is another minimal sounding track and seems to be about a controlling mother, maybe being forced into the Church in some way or someone making her do something she does not want to do.  Not a favourite track of mine but the insight into Tori's upbringing is interesting.

"Tear In Your Hand" has like a Classic Rock or Rock Pop vibe, with more Psychedelic moments, I love this track.  It has a great full musical backing and more produced than other songs Tori has made, and it works to full effect.  

"Little Earthquakes", the title track and unusually at the end of the album, is simply gorgeous, almost Gothic, and almost sounding like Alanis Morissette at times.  It has off tuned segments, a little sixties psychedelia, screeching vocals, soft vocals, basically is Tori Amos in a nutshell, well in 6 and a half minutes!


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