November 1999

Added November 18, 1999

You can find a review of "to venus and back" at Pop-music.net. I have also added the review below.

Tori Amos: To Venus And Back
review by Bucket

What can I say about Tori Amos? She's always been a prolific songwriter, turning-out quality albums with apparent ease year after year. Within each album there are always a few treasures, but never since her debut album "Little Earthquakes" in 1992 have the albums ever seemed excellent as a whole. With "To Venus And Back", she has finally produced an album full of complexity and richness throughout.

As we expect from Tori, the album is littered with fantastic ballads. "Bliss" - the opening number - is such a strong song that you would swear it's been a hit already. It's a beautiful ballad combining just enough of a modern influence upon her classic songwriting. With "Concertina", "Lust", "Suede", "Josephine" and "Spring Haze", she might put you off with those irritating one-word titles that seem totally irrelevant, but these songs have real class and should not be overlooked.

Taking influence from "Under The Pink" (1994), "Boys From Pele" (1996) and "From The Choirgirl Hotel" (1998), Tori has scattered some fantastic upbeat tracks throughout the album, which provide a good foil and allow the ballads to shine. "Juarez" and "Riot Poof" at first appearance seem to be album fillers but with more listening, they are definite growers.

Aside from the current single, "Glory of The 80s", there are two songs that I would single out. First, "Datura". Tori has never managed to shake off the Kate Bush tag, and this song just strengthens all of those comparisons. However, when it comes to "1,000 Oceans", all is forgiven. This song is absolutely stunning; it's simple yet complex and leaves you tingling and warm all over. It overshadows all the other songs on the album, which would have been fantastic if "1,000 Oceans" hadn't stolen their thunder.

You must buy this album because it comes in two parts. If CD 1 doesn't make you want to buy the complete set of Tori albums, then CD 2 will give you some of her best gems live. Tori Amos is one of those rare artists who sound even better live than they do on the album - as the stampede for tickets for her few UK dates confirmed. The album is worth having for the live tracks alone, and the original tracks are some of the best she has ever done.

"To Venus And Back" is a must for anyone's collection and, as ever with Tori, the best thing to do is to take her to bed with a hot cup of cocoa and enjoy.

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