09:17 PM, Jul 12, 2009
FULL REVIEW at:
Tori Amos has been a big part of my musical fanaticism for a long time. I first heard of her my freshman year of college, got Little Earthquakes & Under the Pink from BMG, got Boys for Pele right when it came out, and I’ve been a fan ever since. There was a period of time where, if I could, I’d drive all over the Midwest to go see her. This show was going on the 6 year mark since I’d seen her, and let’s just say that I was itching for some classic Tori live… but first up, the opener.
One Eskimo hit the stage right about 8pm, and played 4-5 songs (about a half hour’s worth of material). I liked their sound… sort of a singer-songwriter blown up into a pop group (sort of if Maroon 5 had more interesting musicians). Their drummer had a nice style, sitting on a box-type drum and using that as the kick drum. Their guitarist and bassist/trumpet player were also fun to watch. They played “Kandi,” “UFO,” and “Astronauts” for sure, as those songs are on the EP that I picked up for only $5. They’re working on wrapping up their full-length debut now…
Tori hit the stage with her band (Matt Chamberlain on drums & John Evans on bass) at around 8:50pm and played for a solid two hours without much stopping. I forget how much I love her live shows. Great lights, great mix of tunes from her whole career, fun stage presence, pretty energetic crowd… she played a lot more older songs than I would have thought, and only four songs from her latest record.
* Give (a fave of the night)
* Caught a Lite Sneeze (a fave of the night)
* Welcome to England - John’s bass intro was very Tool-y… as if Justin Chancellor was in a pop band
* Cornflake Girl (a fave of the night)
* Icicle (a fave of the night)
* Little Amsterdam
* Black Dove (January)
* 1,000 Oceans
* Joni Mitchell’s River (solo – Lizard Lounge)
* Winter (solo – Lizard Lounge)
* Playboy Mommy
* Little Earthquakes (a fave of the night)
* Fast Horse (a fave of the night)
* Take to the Sky (a mega fave of the night)
* Precious Things (a fave of the night)
* Strong Black Vine – crowd floods front part of theatre, much to the “oh crap, what do I do?” of the security guys
* Encore: Big Wheel (a fave of the night)
Fantastic show… prior to this show, I was kind of in a “cooling” phase with Tori. I hadn’t seen her since the Scarlet’s Walk tour (2003), and I’d only been slightly fond of The Beekeeper and American Doll Posse albums. Forcing myself recently to dig into her newest one, Abnormally Attracted to Sin, and then seeing it live was great. It was a much warranted end to the break from being a big time Tori fan. Sure, Abnormally isn’t going back to the Little Earthquake through Boys of Pele days, but it’s still good music and she still puts on a great show, full of songs from her vast catalogue.
09:41 PM, Jan 20, 2009
TRIPLE-REVIEW: Tori Amos, Radiohead, Over the Rhine (3 cities in Ohio - - Aug 2003)
Ohio is great for concerts… triple show review (8/24/2003)
Not every week do you get to see 3 of your Top 5 Artists. This was one of those weeks for me…
Tori Amos, Radiohead, and Over the Rhine.
Here’s a triple review of OHIO shows this past week…
I. Tori Amos
III. Over the Rhine (bookstore show)
I. TORI AMOS & Marc Broussard
PromoWest Pavilion, Columbus, OH (just barely outside of downtown)
Wednesday, August 20th, 2003
HIGHLIGHTS: The opener was good. Strong voice. Tori was great… there were some technical problems partway through the set, but she handled it well. Her dress ripped, too… the resulting song that came out of that one was great. :) Song highlights were: Sweet Dreams (a Winter b-side), Mr Zebra, Caught a Lite Sneeze, Mary (another b-side), I Can’t See New York, Hey Jupiter, Bliss, A Sorta Fairytale, China, Liquid Diamonds, Girl, Precious Things, Space Dog, and Cornflake Girl… a lot of great tunes. Plus a birthday number was fun, too… apparently this was her last show before turning 40. She seems to be cool with that. :) Hanging out in Columbus’ Short North was great the next day, too. Magnolia Thunderpussy (awesome music selection), Monkeys Retreat (cool Simpsons collector stuff), and coffee for me; jewelry and art shops for Margarita… lots of glass in the Cow Town. Seemed like the shops fancied it. We some some excellent Chihuly pieces… my credit card wouldn’t handle purchasing them ($32k to start). Oh, maybe next time.
BUMMER: Ben Folds not being there was the biggest bummer. This was one of the two shows that he wasn’t going to co-headline. I didn’t find that out until *after* I bought my tickets and booked the hotel. Another bummer… she seemed to play too much from To Venus and Back (4-5 songs, ugh). Oh well, she played enough other material to make up for it… :)
OVERALL: Great show… my 8th time seeing Tori, and the setlist was been vastly different every time. That’s what I love about her touring… from day-to-day, it’s a different show.
II. RADIOHEAD & Steve Malkmus and the Jicks
Blossom Music Center, Cuyahoga Falls, OH (just outside of Akron)
Thursday, August 21st, 2003
HIGHLIGHTS: There There (with Ed on mini-drums and Jonny on mini-drums, keys, and guitar), Paranoid Android, Exit Music (For a Film), Lucky, Idioteque, Morning Bell, 2+2=5, Punchup at a Wedding, Wolf at the Door. They seemed to stick with the newer stuff, which is fine. But it seemed when they played any older stuff (Paranoid or Exit Music), that they were phenomenally tighter, and/or those songs lent themselves better to the live show. The Kid A stuff didn’t seem to lend itself as well (it did last time - 2 years ago). My favorite played was probably Paranoid Android. We moved up to the right side of the lawn, away from the crowd, after about 5 songs. We could see and hear (and breathe) way better. A nice breeze cooling us off, comfy grass to sit on, a beauty on my arm, and a great band flaoting through the air… ’twas a good time. Oh, and finally finding the only Indian restaurant in the Akron/Cuyahoga phone book was a blessing.
Different korma than our usual haunts (yummy as hell), and Strawberry Lassi (yum).
BUMMER: No My Iron Lung, Fake Plastic Trees, or Street Spirit (unless they had a 2nd encore that we missed)… also, the song “Kid A” was icky in the live performance (with a side of ICK sauce). Steve Malkmus & the Jicks were quite boring and lame. There were 2 or 3 Jicks’ songs near the middle-end that were *decent*. That’s about it. Oh, another bummer… Blossom’s parking is, like, miles and miles and miles from the venue. A 30 minute walk post-show is a drain. Oh, plus when we tried to check-in to our B&B at 3pm *no one* was there. We walked in, and *no one*. We eventually found a room with an A/C and napped until 5:30 until the proprietor finally showed up. It was surreal, at best. Quite disorganized B&B, but a KILLER house (O’Neill House in Akron) and a killer breakfast… yum.
OVERALL: Great lights, Thom’s a spaz, Jonny hates his guitar, Radiohead put on a great show again.
III. OVER THE RHINE and tons of books
Joseph-Beth Booksellers, Cincinnati, OH (just outside of Kentucky)
Saturday, August 23rd, 2003
HIGHLIGHTS: Hometown (Norwood) Boy, Suitcase, Anything At All, Show Me, Fever, Ohio, trivia break (Drew Vogel, aka D.V., won a framed poster), The Seahorse, and Summertime. They also had What I’ll Remember Most, Changes Come, and Bothered on the setlist, but didn’t play them. Suitcase was great.
Show Me was better than what I’d heard prior, and Fever was stunningly sexy (as usual).
BUMMER: I didn’t have my OHIO CDs from Paste yet. I didn’t even have them by the time I got home late Saturday night. I had K&L sign my Paste Order Confirmation email instead. I crack myself up sometimes.
OVERALL: Great set, sound was a bit off, but it was a really fun time. Song highlights were… all of ‘em. It was good to see them in a nice intimate bookstore venue.
My wife (Margarita) somehow puts up with all of the driving to concerts… yay, I picked a winner! :)
09:09 PM, Aug 04, 2003
There is always something magical about seeing a concert in the Summertime at the Greek Theatre. Nothing can compare to a night under the stars, the aeroplanes flying overhead, a nice glass or three of wine in hand and good music. When this good music should really be called the great music of Tori Amos and her superb backing band, it makes for an evening that is nothing less than stellar.
Tori has always been a great live act, and it is evident that over the course of her career she is always excelling and improving in this arena.
Let's face it, some bands don't translate well live, and you're left wishing that you had just stayed home and listened to the C.D. or at least saved the money to upgrade your stereo system. This is clearly not the case with Tori. While the night included most of her hits and a lot of rarities (always a bonus for the true fans), all of the songs were delivered in a manner that was nothing short of refreshing. Tori has this gift for not just simply playing the track note for note off of the C.D., but rather breathing a new life into each of the songs. For much of her show, I couldn't help but feeling that I had never heard the songs she was playing before, even though they had all been committed to memory over many listenings. This is why we pay for concerts-not to hear the same song on the disc but a new, live interpretation. Some artists can't pull this off, some can, and when they do (as was the case with Tori), there is no doubt that you are watching an artist of substance.
As usual, her two piece backing band was as tight as ever, and remain one of the top rhythm sections out on the road today.
But there was no doubt who the night belonged to.
With her flowing dress and the spotlight on her, she remained as mesmerizing as always. Tori makes a seamless transition between her piano and organ, and watching her, one can easily become hypnotized. So many artists seem to have the attitude of let's get this show over with and collect our paycheck, but Tori is always passionate about her playing and singing, from the moment she walks onto stage until the last oncore. Watching her play and the relationship that she has with her instrument borders on the erotic. Nothing seems to exist but her and her keyboards.
She kept the evening well balanced, chatting up the audience at times and keeping the music flowing between the slower music and the more up-tune numbers, but never, ever was the passion missing.
Tori Amos is a phenomenal artist to listen to, but even more enthralling to watch while she plays her inspired music. When the house lights came on, I just wanted to give her a hug and say thanks. Please don't ever stop touring Tori. The world needs that passion.
"KIIS FM Jingle Ball," Staples Center, Los Angeles, Calif.
Jen Lowery Photography
December 5, 2014 |
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