Tori Amos: Under the Pink
I explained at the beginning of the month that 1994 was a pivotal year in my life. Two bus routes moved from one junior high to another, and my bus was one of those routes. I found myself needing to decide what sort of friends I wanted to make. I decided to make friends based upon shared musical interests. Musical interests I had been telling myself I shouldn’t like I suddenly gave into. It is at least a little bit because of this year that 20 years later I have a blog about music.
Under the Pink was released on January 31, 1994. Cornflake Girl was the single that got me interested in Tori Amos as an artist. It was so different, with its pealing and strong female vocals and heavily focused on piano rather than feedback guitar. The accompanying video was also vastly different from the broody videos so popular of the era.
Another fantastic song from Under the Pink was titled God. It begs the question “Do you need a woman to look after you?” to a supposedly infallible being, which in my mind is still what makes the song so good.
Pretty Good Year, Icicle, and The Wrong Band are all songs which I had never heard until I bought the album, but have through the years grown to know and love extremely well. Pretty Good Year leads off the album, and as such, has the duty of grabbing your attention. Icicle isn’t about icicles at all, not that I necessarily realized that when I was 14-15 years old… The Wrong Band is just Tori and her piano, but never seems to lose steam.
But that’s not what I came here to talk about…Past the Mission is my favorite song on the album. A tale about a forbidden relationship between a man and a woman. One of them disappears, and the other pines over the loss. Oh, and it features Trent Reznor on backing vocals!
Through the years, I have continued to listen to Tori Amos. She’s made missteps along the way, but there has usually been at least one song on each of her albums which has kept me interested. A few years ago, she re-worked several of her popular songs with a symphony orchestra, but Cloud on my Tongue, Yes Anastasia & Precious Things (which I did not discuss in this review) were the only songs from Under the Pink that received such a re-working.
After I discovered Under the Pink, I found her first album, Little Earthquakes. I highly recommend Crucify and Silent All These Years. The latter was a benefit single for Tori Amos’ Rape Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN).