As she prepares the high-profile release of her new studio album Native Invader, Tori Amos sneaks out her almost forgotten '80s debut that has been officially unavailable for three decades: Y Kant Tori Read.
The three performances featured below serve as striking evidence that Amos nurtures rather than neglects her songs as they age, each successive performance expanding on the mythology and narrative of the world she’s created.
Today’s spotlight explores albums in Tori Amos’ repertoire that are arguably more divisive among listeners due to their unorthodox structures and diversity in production and sound. The essays that follow seek to unpack each of these records’ complexities with careful consideration of Amos’ and her collaborators’ intentions and both popular and critical reception of the works.
Tori Amos has always worked to create music that fits her own instinctive sense of what popular music should sound like. And via the brain of a piano prodigy with the compositional impulses of Bach, the rock sensibilities of Robert Plant and Freddie Mercury, the confessional courage of Joni Mitchell and Rickie Lee Jones, and the tinkering tendencies of Thom Yorke and, yes, Kate Bush.
There’s breathing room in being a 33-year-old feminist Tori-lover. Feminism isn’t so black and white to me now as it was back then. I don’t know what choices Tori made with regards to feminism, I don’t know if she calls herself one now, or if her daughter does.
The next best thing to listening to a Tori album? Listening to live Tori. And watching Tori. And reading about Tori. And, well, you get the picture. PopMatters give you a rundown of some of Amos’ must-have audio, visual, and literary supplements.
Tori Amos has had a career full of buzz-worthy moments. Thanks to the miracle of YouTube, PopMatters brings you 10 of the most memorable ones out there. These clips prove three things: #1 Tori is hilarious, #2 You should never piss her off, and #3 she knows how to perfectly capture a zeitgeist moment and savor it.
Tori spoke with PopMatters in September about the impetus behind her newest project, the orchestral retrospective Gold Dust, which features new arrangements and vocals for some of her most enduring songs, as well as some more surprising additions.
Today we explore Tori-as-curator and look at the various collections she has released. From box set rarities, to re-conditioned favorites, to a seasonal album, Tori’s penchant for constantly re-working and re-imagining her music leads listeners far beyond typical “Greatest Hits” offerings.