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More Unrepentant leaks

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-Easily better than Abnormally Attracted to Sin. No question.
-The most obvious influence on it to my ears is the The Light Princess; it's campy but self-aware, complex but straightforward, and ambitious
-"Giant's Rolling Pin" is more "Programmable Soda" than "Not Dying Today"
-"Oysters" is simply incredible
-The title track is a beast. It weaves in and out of so many different styles.

America: Sprightly, and reminded me of "Virginia." The personification of America is interesting; "She takes herself to night school" made me double take. There's a "Starling"-esque breakdown but I didn't cringe. The ending was pure Scarlet's Walk, and this is the first example of a song from this record that will sound perfect solo.

Wild Way: Loved the piano on it. The lyrics are some of her most straightforward to date. Not too fussed otherwise, doubt it'll have many fans.

Wedding Day: I adore this song. One of the ones I listened to twice. It has an absolutely gorgeous melody and the folky/Americana sound works so well. It has a darker feel and was one of the first instances where I started noticing how the album has a musical quality to it. Solo this will be amazing.

Weatherman: The first of a group of songs that puts this album ahead of her material from the last few years. There's haunting piano and a gorgeous echo effect on her voice. Definitely "Garlands"-esque, and there's hints of Scarlet and the better moments from The Beekeeper. I wrote down "High notes!"

16 Shades of Blue: A truly bizarre song. It maintains the dark mood set by "Weatherman," but takes it in a bitter, cynical direction. The lyrics are straightforward (some may find them pretty clunky). The production is all over the place, and I think its to the songs detriment. There are some great effects used on her voice, like a fuzzy megaphone effect, and some elements that slip in and out of the mix. There is just too much going on, like someone kept pressing buttons and didn't know when to stop.

Maids of Elfen-mere: This would have sounded at home on Night of Hunters. Also hints of "Devils and Gods." It's celtic, renaissance-feeling but it's definitely one that goes in one ear and out the other.

Promise: Given that Tash seems to be public enemy number 1 around here, I doubt many will change their opinion of the song in its full form. Personally, I really like the melody here, and Tash sounds truly lovely. The organ is the highlight of this song, though. There are some brilliant moments at the end where she plays higher notes on the organ and Tash emulates them? It's hard to explain.

Giant's Rolling Pin: With all the hate and fear, I expected so much worse. This is a silly song that knows its silly. It's not "Not Dying Today," because it's more self aware of its whimsical quality. There's a tuba, which adds to the whimsy. I won't return to it nor do I need to hear it live, but it's really not as offensive as you think.

Unrepentant Geraldines: Much like "16 Shades of Blue," I'm not sure how to tap into this song. It was another one I listened through twice because there is just so much going on. During one verse, my face was contorted in confusion. Then it would shift into something more melodic that seriously sounded like a Little Earthquakes-era melody. Some parts reminded me of "Witness" because there's a sensual groove provided by the organ. I also heard echoes of "Father's Son" during one of the slower parts. Suddenly, she whips out the best piano part of the entire record! Feverish playing and bass notes. It's ridiculous! Then the final 2 minutes are solo piano featuring impressive high notes.

Oysters: This was my first time hearing the song, as I've resisted the shitty leak. So glad to agree with everyone that its one of the best things she's done since the 90s, and it simply ranks up there. Everything about it; the piano, the melody, her voice, the lyrics - this is Tori Amos. At the same time, it doesn't feel like a retread. I'd love to see her focus on what makes this song magical and turn it into a full album.

Rose Dover: I need to listen to this one again. Another song that felt a tad discombobulated. There's loops and keyboards, and parts have an industrial quality. There's a dreamy-sounding post chorus, too. Overall, I could hear it on American Doll Posse.

Invisible Boy: This will rank in the top tier for people. It's a truly beautiful song in the vein of Toast but this feels even more raw. You can hear her breathing, and towards the end you can even hear her voice break. It's obviously one close to her heart based on her delivery. My notes say: Lullaby, sparse, breathing, 90s b-side."

Another from
whisper clyde

From Yessaid: "A friend in media has heard the album and wanted to share some details anonymously:

- "Promise" is "kind of an R&B duet with Tash. No kidding."

- The album is even more Americana than Scarlet.

- "Oysters" is one of the most beautiful piano-vocal songs she's ever done. People will lose their minds over how gorgeous it is."

more about the album from the same reliable source:

The Tash song is bizarre and so is "Giant Rolling Pin." Both should have been b-sides or something. They don't belong on an album.

"Wild Way," "Wedding Day," and "Weatherman" (three W's in a row!) are all fantastic. "Wild Way" is very sparse - "I hate you, I hate you" Tori repeats in a really tender voice, seemingly from the voice of a Native American woman to a pilgrim. Has a Venus-esque drum loop midway. "Wedding Day" is akin to "Carbon" in a lot of ways. Some Wurlitzer and piano and steady drums. "Weatherman" is, if I remember correctly, mostly just piano and vocal.

"Invisible Boy" is very tender a "Merman" and "Toast" hybrid. Tori chokes back tears at the end.

The piano on the piano-vocal songs is INCREDIBLE.

"Geraldines" is very weirdly structured. Lots of organ and layered vocals and then a weird super fast punk guitar and drum moment. This alternates for most of the song. Then the end has a piano solo that's really dark and lovely and then it breaks into a second part that's just Tori and vocal. She repeats "if you see the vicar's wife" over and over.

"Selkie" is also piano-vocal. All the piano is very satisfying. Nothing is dark, though.

This is an album that alternates between very very vibrant and very very melancholy.

your welcome

Speculation from 'an insider at'. I cannot wait to compare this with the album, and see how in/accurate it is. Also - GUITARS! ELECTRIC GUITARS!



dean singing
A lot of critics were particularly harsh on the Spice Girls, whose music was no better or worse than a lot of their boy-band contemporaries. (Oh come on, it was much better.) Vitriol was reserved for the Girls because they were too sexy or not sexy enough, or because they were sending out a feminist message that warped young girls' minds into thinking friendships were just as important as romantic relationships, or they were undermining all the work the riot grrrls had done by making 'Girl Power' into a corporate slogan. Well, fuck all that. They were a heap of fun and *anything* that encourages females to support instead of hate each other gets a big tick from me (to think Mean Girls would be the dominant meme of girl culture a mere 7 years later.) They live in a double-decker bus that's bigger on the inside. Elvis Costello appears as a bartender. Meatloaf is their driver and makes a joke about he loves the girls and he'd do anything for them, but he won't do that. An alien squeezes Scary Spice's boob. *SPOILER* - they make it to Albert Hall in time for their concert.

It's the Spice Girls' world - we just live in it.

Beltane Blessings

little mermaid swoon
Big Wheel Of The Year
Blessed Be This Day of Beltane
Wedding Day of the Goddess and The God
Holy Day of Sacred Marriage
Holy Night Of Sacred Union
The Fertile Goddess of Summer
Walks Through The Land
With the Great Horned God of the Forest
And the Dark Time of Winter is Behind Me....


spn essential
Birthday ToriYes, our lady of Toriphoria turns 50 today. She is exactly ten years older than me, and ten years younger than my mum. Amazing. I want to be able to not just 'keep it together', but actually excell at something in this time. VicTORIous, even.


spn essential
I have been neglecting you, dear LJ (calling you that could be confusing, as it's also my sister's nickname, but, eh). Partially due to logistics (spending seven weeks in  hell at my in-law's lovely and grand house in Kew, where internet usage had to be kept to a minimum because of cost, and my FIL constantly needing it and reasons.) But also because I am in a new frame-of-archetype?-reference? As in;
I am a mother now. Stops. Takes deep breath. Yes, I gave birth to an adorable baby boy on March 25th at ten minutes to one in the morning...after a fifty hour give-or-take labour. I'm not including the 'oohh, that might have been a contraction, oh, wait, it's gone' part of labour either. This was every five minutes, grabbing Nat's hand and saying "gasp..huff...are you..timing..them?" (Just to put that in perspective, the average labour is somewhere between eight and 18 hours.)
Labour of love under here...Collapse )

I was partially distracted by the guy who was sewing what seemed to be a complicated macrame pattern onto my lady parts, and the nurses who were topping up my blood like I was a champagne glass; well, I certainly felt fragile. Three months later I still haven't really been able to connect that excruciating experience with the beautiful baby boy who now lives with us. Like his namesake, it really was like an angel had chosen to fall on me. His name is Malachai, but sometimes I'll whisper to him that he's Lucky, and we're lucky too, to have him.

spn essential
weddingphotoFour years ago today -almost exactly - I woke up with the weirdest feeling. Something massive was happening today, something I was actually going to have to wear stockings and heels for. I am not a morning person (not quite to the point of having a novelty t-shirt that says "I'm-up-and-dressed-what-more-do-you-want", but almost) and I had to search around my blurry consciousness for what was going on. Job interview? My birthday? Oh, that's right, my wedding. Our wedding. Nat and I are getting married today.
I'm not going to go into huge details about the day - but I can remember the nerves, the excitement, and the fact that *this is actually happening*.
We had a small civil ceremony at my in-law's lovely house, with maybe fifty guests; close friends and family. It went without a hitch (except for the literal 'hitching' I suppose) and we even managed to get the kiss right. (Yes, you do have to practice kissing in the rehearsal. One of us kept tilting our head the wrong way. Possibly me.)
My nieces/ flowergirls looked adorable (Mikayla's sequinned pink converse almost stole the show) and my nephew did manage to drop the rings, but all said and done it was amazing/ nerve-wracking/ and joyous all at once.) I was very aware that it wasn't about the day itself, but the kickstarting of a new way of living for both of us. Which is why it was a fairly short, intimate and casual affair; I wasn't going to wear a long white dress and pretend I was a virgin (at 35, that ship had long since sailed); we didn't have any formal photographs; the food was casual and buffet-served. When I hear that today the average wedding costs well into five figures, I'm kind of aghast. Wouldn't that money be better spent on a  house deposit or something? My little black semi-goth-lolita dress was $75. Apparently some women spend almost ten times that! It makes no sense to me at all.
Anyway, my point is, my life changed for the better that day. Having Nat as my side-kick/ best friend/ husband has literally saved my life. That's an option that should be availble to any couple, regardless of gender, because it kicks arse; that's why I'm so enthusiastic about legalising gay marriage. Because it's awesome.



courtney arms
Woah, I haven't posted in a while. I've been too busy a) gestating and b) recovering from a mid-pregnancy bout of anxiety. In theory, I'm due to have Lambaby in three days time. But now I'm looking at percentages, and as everyone knows, 'due dates' are no more than educated guesses and the reality is that you have a four-week window (37 to 41 weeks) for a normal birth.
BUT THIS WAITING IS KILLING ME. The fatigue is probably the worst part, but there's also that weird twilight-zone feeling of 'something huge is happening...sometime.' It's not like starting a new job or getting married - equally life-changing events - because it's totally unplannable. Will it happen tomorrow? Will it drag on to March 27, meaning the doctors will want to induce me? Will it start when I walk down the street to get some lunch today?
I have some nice qualities - but I'm also a double Aries, so patience is not one of them. Trying a few anecdotal things hasn't been sucessful (eg spicy food, sex, walking, raspberry leaf tea.) How do other women deal with this, I wonder? I keep hoping for a burst of 'nesting' ie wanting to do housework, but this is just a pregnancy, not a miracle. I have 'edited' my makeup drawers and managed to get rid of about a third of it. (To give you an idea how long it is since I've done this, there were some matte brown Poppy lipsticks in there, and a few pencils I owned before I moved to Melbourne over ten years ago.)
So. Waiting. And I'm fairly sure I'm not going to be the only woman in *ever* to never actually give birth and have an 18-year-old subcutaneous conjoined twin becuase that would make driving lessons really difficult.

(Added pic of Tori Amos making it look all blissful.)


spn essential

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