I got my hands on a copy of Tori Amos’ latest CD (yeah, I know it’s a bit late, but hey, I’ve got 0 budget here). I’ve been a Tori fan for decades, though I’ve never thought she’s done much of note since Little Earthquakes. Sure, a hit here, a good song there. (I don’t think I’m alone in this, you can go to Amazon right now, and buy just about any one of her CDs for less than a couple of bucks). For the years I’ve liked Tori Amos, you could say one thing about her songs…if you’ve heard one, you’ve heard them all. Every song is another rendition of Crucify, or Winter, or Precious Things, etc. etc. etc.
But this one…this one is different. It’s like Tori decided to say, “Hey, I like the piano, but let’s make some good music now.” It’s like the new Tori. No, it’s better, it’s the neo-Tori. While it does have a few of the same old drab Tori Amos songs in the middle of the 23 song set she lays down on this record…everything else is refreshing. Exciting. And, dare I say, catchy. The best song, by far, is “Big Wheel”. An up-beat, but riveting song. Programmable Soda, and Velvet Revolution are instant classics too.
What makes this record so different is she’s enhanced her music with some good beats. It’s not just dreary and sometimes haunting piano…she’s complemented it with some great guitar riffs, beats, and in “Hello Mr. Zebra” fashion…some excellent French Horns and Violins.
This 23 song CD is fantastic because the Neo-Tori more than just the “happy phantom, conflake girl, sordid fairy tale, precious thing” she seems to have been for decades. The Neo Tori is a complete Tori…and it’s good stuff.