Read a review of The Beekeeper from the February 22, 2005 editon of The Tartan Online, the newspaper of Radford University in Radford, VA.
Thanks to menju56 for sendning this to the Dent. You can read this review online at thetartan.com or below:
Tori Amos: The Beekeeper
By Adam Harris
"The Beekeeper" is Tori Amos's eighth studio album and her first collection of new material since 2002's "Scarlet's Walk." Fans have kept their appetites suppressed with the 2003 hits package "Tales of a Librarian" and last year's comprehensive concert DVD "Welcome to Sunny Florida."
Amos delves deep into the creative process on "The Beekeeper." This album is truly a tasty piece of ear-candy at first listen, but trying to disinter the album's concept can be more daunting. Amos is a mother, a daughter, a songwriter, a dreamer and a conversationalist baring it all through her music.
"The Beekeeper" is comprised of 19 tracks, each belonging to one of six different "gardens." The tunes aren't sequenced by garden, so the listener can choose to reorder the tracks and listen to the similarities in each song's organic origin.
"Parasol," a track from "The Greenhouse," opens the album. Amos' delivery can be unintelligible at times. What sounds like "I haven't moved since the cocaine" at first is actually "since the call came." Her metaphors are hard to place, too. "When I come to terms with this whiplash of silk on wool embroidery," leaves much to the imagination. However, the vague references can take nothing away from the quirky melodies that speckle "The Beekeeper."
Another track from "The Greenhouse" portion of the album features Ireland's famed son, Damien Rice, providing backing vocals to "The Power of Orange Knickers." Another infectious melody with the pair's reserved singing of vague references: "Am I alone with this-This little pill in my hand and with this secret kiss." You got me.
From "The Desert Garden" comes "General Joy," a deep, growling piano groove that gets tinkered with by reverb-drenched guitar while a choir of Tori-ettes add vocal embellishments.
"Sweet the Sting" offers up a radiating organ riff complimented by island-style percussion that builds up to an enormous refrain of layered voices. Perhaps the penetrating organ is what makes "Elixirs and Herbs" the origin of this particular piece. The CD's most rockin' tracks find their home in the "Rock Garden," especially "Cars and Guitars" and the quirky "Hoochie Woman." The former features irresistible vocals and the latter features another deep piano riff and whimsical percussion that evokes serious machismo.
A great album leaves the listener yearning for more. By such criteria, "The Beekeeper" is a classic. Amos gives us plenty to listen to and plenty of ways to approach the music. Whether you're looking for a relaxing release or a socio-political wake-up call, "The Beekeeper" is sweeter than honey.