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November 6, 2002

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Thanks to Shane Byrne and Melissa for sending this to the Dent. This is a really good review of Scarlet's Walk! This was also posted online at

SCARLET FANTASTIC (rated 9 out of 10)

Wheras 2001's Strange Little Girls, a collection of diverse cover versions sung from a female perspective was a considered if heartfelt project, Scarlet's Walk is a record born out of extremes of joy and tragedy. Tori Amos began thinking about this record, at the same time as she discovered she had fallen pregnant with her daughter Natashya. As impending motherhood encouraged her to contemplate the future, life and love in a way she hadn't before, the unprecented Set 11th attacks on her native USA occurred, shaking her to her core. The album was completed in the wake of those attacks.

Although described as a concept album documenting the travels and experiences of the fictional Scarlet as she crosses modern day USA freom West Coast to East, the record is more like a collection of snapshots or mini movies. Each song tells a unique tale, sometimes moral, sometimes intensely personal, but all narrated using Amos' considerable lyrical talent. The songs also frequently evoke both historical and more spiritual facets of Americana; there are tales of cars and girls but also of ghosts and mountains.

Her vocal performance over the album as a whole may be her most consistent yet and fans of earlier work will simply be delighted. Choosing stand-outs on such an album is an onerous task, as with all Amos' work. Her deeply personal style means that the listener is invited in to each song yet no two people might enjoy an identical welcome. "Gold Dust", "Taxi Ride" and "Pancake" are among the best things she's ever penned. Tori Amos' Northern Light it appears, is still shining.

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