The Times (London)
February 12-18, 2000

Added March 15, 2000

Ken Tough sent me a review of Boys For Pele that appeared in The Times (London) in the weekend "metro" supplement on February 12-18, 2000. Read it below.

In "The Vulture: Picks over the bones of contemporary culture" column, there is the BfP cover pic, with this review:

"SHOOTING STAR: Amos's provocative album"

Fractured relationships often bring out the best in singer- songwriters by transforming emotional pain into cathartic confessionals. Tori Amos's break-up with her lover/co-producer Eric Rosse occurred at a crucial moment in her career. Having buried her "rock chick" past, she needed something substantial to convince the doubters of her standing as the most accomplished female writer in rock since Joni Mitchell. "I had to be on my knees before I could be absolutely honest, before I could find my own fire," she declared.

Partly recorded in a Co Wicklow church, this album proved her most enduring and enigmatic. The Pele of the title was not the footballer but a volcano goddess symbolising the "breaking down of patriarchy". Throught the album, Amos escapes into metaphor and ellipses, throwing in song fragments and opaque narratives which resonate thanks to the stripped-down arrangements.

Even the artwork was teasingly provocative. Having once written about being raped at gunpoint, it was alarming to see Amos brandishing a shotgun on the cover. Equally disconcerting was the graphic image on the inner sleeve of her suckling a piglet. Despite the complexity of the compositions, the album climbed to No 2 in Britain and America and a remix of _Professional Widow_, supposedly inspired by Courtney Love, unexpectedly swept Ibiza and topped the singles chart.

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