Updated: As reported earlier, Tori's video collection Fade To Red on DVD will be released in the U.S. on February 14, 2006. We now have some dates for this release overseas. According to amazon.co.uk, Fade To Red will be released in the U.K. on Monday, March 27, 2006. (Thanks Graham (Thomas).) I have also heard that the current release date for Fade To Red in France will be on Monday, March 13, 2006 according to fnac.com. (Thanks to Stephan and Danny Berger.) Finally, the release date for the video collection in Australia at this point appears to be on Friday, March 3, 2006 according to ourbrisbane.yourmovies.com.au. (Thanks Daniel Nolan.)
Finally, I have a nice review of this DVD set from Jeff Kleismit, who obtained an advanced copy of Fade To Red. Click the details link to read this review.
A review of Fade To Red from Jeff Kleismit:
"FADE TO RED"
The latest Tori Amos release is a video retrospective, gathering together all of her videos from throughout her solo career-with the exception of "Glory of the 80s" and "Strange Little Girl." "Fade to Red" offers new fans and old regulars the first chance to own these videos with DVD-quality video transfers and remastered in Dolby 5.1 surround and PCM stereo audio. All songs were remastered by Jon Astley, not by Tori herself; one might look on this fact with hopeful anticipation of further Rhino remasters of her earlier work, as Astley has worked with Rhino re-releases before.
The video quality is fantastic throughout "Fade to Red," and the audio is impressive as well. The only issues I have experienced with the DVD playback have been with a couple of the Cindy Palmano-directed videos. On my lower-end (cheap) DVD player, during "Winter" and "Crucify," the video became very jumpy and the audio cut in and out. On my high-end Sony machine, though, everything played flawlessly. Both of the discs are immaculate. In other words, if you experience similar hiccups with the playback, it's probably the player and not the discs themselves. The menus on the DVD are animated, with Tori's video clips playing within frames to make them look like individual photographs and Tori's songs making up the background music. There's even one especially nice transition using a clip from the "Winter" video.
The packaging for the release is very high-quality, and the "Past the Mission" cut-out is my favorite part, with a cut-out church from the video shoot holding the set's paperwork in place. The track lists and title on the packaging are stamped in an auburn foil, and the whole color scheme and appearance of the materials seems very lush and rich. The images behind the discs and on the discs themselves carry a water theme; the discs show the "baptismal" tub of "Crucify" and the rainfall behind Tori from "1000 Oceans," and behind the discs are again a pool of water and rainfall. Overall, I find the packaging to be quite impressive.
Many people have written me regarding the audio commentary track Tori provides for numerous videos and the presentation of the videos themselves (i.e., wide- or full-screen). As a result, I have listed the videos below, along with the format of each video and one teaser quote from Tori's commentary for each. "FS" stands for full-screen, and "LB" stands for letter-boxed, as I have no idea how to tell if something is technically "true widescreen" or not. In the commentary, Tori recollects about the locations where the videos were shot, the individuals she worked with at the time, and the process of translating the music into images. It is really a fascinating listen. Tori's comments are entertaining to hear, with her anecdotes being a mix of lucid looks-back and political-religious Torispeak. As fans, I think we've all grown used to that by now.
In the end, I would recommend "Fade to Red" to new and old Ears with Feet alike. As collectors that seek the elusive complete collection, many fans will snatch this DVD set up regardless of what any review says. For the casual fans, it offers many the chance to own the videos and see them in high-quality form for the first time. For others still, the videos can be seen somewhere other than online, where one's connection speed might hinder the streaming experience. Everything about "Fade to Red" screams quality, and I, for one, am hoping to see more Tori-Rhino-Epic re-releases in the future!
1. Past the Mission (FS)
"I loved the idea that this priest was really kind of the talk of the set because the women were saying, you know, 'If we had a priest that looked like that, we'd go in to church a lot more often!'"
2. Crucify (FS)
"I've always had a thing for waitresses, and I thought that we needed some cheerleaders. 'I liked the idea that Anne Boleyn has these cheerleaders. I think she deserves some cheerleaders."
3. Jackie's Strength (LB)
"She's seeing people that had all these ideas about who they were going to be. 'And then, something happens on the way to your life. 'The driver of the taxi, we brought him back from the 'Spark' video, and we thought he was an important element; he's the guy that has a, not a complete finger, and you'll see him in 'Spark,' and we liked having that tie because Tori's past is . . . um . . . you know, something that even I don't know sometimes. I think she gets up to all kinds of things. 'Young Tori is trying to remind her of an agreement they made "
4. A Sorta Fairytale (LB)
"The girl who ended up wearing [the shoe] was a dancer with a size ten foot, which is not easy to find-ten pairs of size ten Sergio Rossi's-in a very short amount of time! [...] There were leg people, and there were arm people, and there were head people. I think the arm and leg did get along quite well. I think they hooked up!"
5. Winter (FS)
"I remember coming out in a collared sweater because Karen Binns, the stylist, thought well, yeah, child-woman-girl-it all works in a sweater. And Cindy said, 'What in the world is she in?' And Karen said, 'Well, I love the material.' And Cindy said, 'Well, do something to it, Karen.' And [Karen] said, 'Oh, girl, I'm gonna push knit in a way you ain't never seen knit pushed.'"
6. Spark (LB)
"We wanted her to be kinda protected in this shroud. I was really into 'Twin Peaks' the first season when it came out, so I liked the idea of a complex story."
7. Sleeps with Butterflies (LB)
"I'd be on blue screen for hours and hours 'and they're yelling, 'You're on a mushroom now!' And I'd say, 'I wish I were on many!'"
8. Cornflake Girl -- U.S. Version (LB)
"This is sort of 'Mean Girls' before 'Mean Girls.'"
9. Hey Jupiter -- Dakota Version (FS)
"I don't see this as Tori choosing to die or to commit suicide. I see this as an angel that's happy and an angel that really believes they're going to a good place."
10. Silent All These Years (FS)
"I liked the idea of 'music box,' trying to break out of it as a musician."
1. Caught a Lite Sneeze (FS)
"This period of composing for me was a harpsichord and piano-timelines were crossed. If you think about it, it's crawling inside the bloodline of the piano that leads to the harpsichord and back."
2. 1000 Oceans (FS)
"I began to see that the earth, as a creature, is separate from our life. If we live in cities, she's almost like a ghost; you don't hear her. 'But sometimes we can see her: the crazies, the broken-hearted, the artists."
3. God (FS)
"I didn't really foresee . . . um . . . what it was going to be like having hundreds of rats crawling all over you. 'Karen Binns was threatening the rats, ''You get anything on my garment!"
4. Bliss (FS)
"Lilith Fair was going on-usually in the same town we were in, and we were in arenas, plugged in, rockin' the house-and I think both messages were extremely important because it was different aspects of the Feminine."
5. China (FS)
"I was humbled by this stark, gorgeous place I call home now. 'I stayed and watched until every last rock of the stone piano was pulled back to sea, and when I said goodbye, I didn't realize that I was really saying, 'I'll see you soon.'"
6. Raspberry Swirl (LB)
"This really was, you could say, a collaboration Karen Binns had with the directing team. 'The casting, of course, was pretty central to this, and . . . um . . . Karen was quite rigid about what the casting should be, and I've always loved the fact that she'll say to me over and over again, 'Come on girl, we have to represent the children!'"
7. Talula -- The Tornado Mix (FS)
"I guess you could say it's a performance video more than a story video. Clearly, there are elements of investigation; I was investigating Southern culture with this song, 'Talula.'"
8. Sweet the Sting (FS)
"The truth of it is: when you go live, there is no lip synch live. You know, there are artists that use DATs when they're onstage; I mean that's just because they're not really musicians who can perform live. They're artists who are studio-accomplished, but they're very different things. And I sort of, I love the challenge of having to do it 'I think all of that makes it magical or, you know, a train wreck. That's the danger of it. So, if you use DATs, then you're really not very dangerous, are you?"
9. Pretty Good Year (FS)
"Karen Binns was very much about the dancers and what they needed to be expressing as they carried Tori to the chair-these muscle-bound guys in briefs lovingly delivering this woman; that's one of my favorite moments, I guess."
1. Cornflake Girl -- U.K. Version (FS)
"The song was inspired by Alice Walker's 'The Temple of My Familiar' and how women treat each other. And again, I had my buddies on the side trying to get me through it, and the women who wouldn't help me through it, well they weren't invited to the set, obviously."
2. Professional Widow Remix (FS)
"This is one of the renditions of my work that I always kind of was proud of because I don't think that it disrespected the musicians on the original. A lot of what you hear was on the original master. 'And I am a sucker for a good bass line."