Life isn’t all that easy. It’s not a straight line through a manicured park, or a nicely decorated mall. It’s more of a water slide ride, in the Arizona desert, darkened by storms and sometimes pot marked by good fortunes. There are many things that perturb and undercut our development, globally. More importantly, we’re stricken with a menace to our personal growth and prosperity prospects.
Fiona Apple has gone through that. A mega pop star in the 90’s, and in decades time, going into phases of self re-examination and reflection. Professionally, Fiona dipped into the world of ultra niche, as she’d gone back to the most creatively satisfying. A world that started her career and a world of work that made her the house hold name she was and still is today.
She’s never not evolved, however. And in snippets we get the chance to see where she’s gone and what she’s seen, through the menagerie of colors that mark her albums.
This album sure does roll back to the impressions of a ‘simpler’ world, as our current world, in contrast, seems a bit too much ‘out of control’. That’s what Fiona is about. That’s what we love about Fiona’s works. She calms and manages our angsts and woes; the re-setting turns our manic lives, back to a ‘simply looking forward’ listening and enjoying music as they should be.
‘Fetch The Bold Cutters’ is an absolute riot, in the most defiant way. It’s just like Fiona had never left the limelight of our listening hearts. The album is set into 2 segments, segregated in the middle with ‘Newspaper’. The first half is much more amenable to the essence of spoken word, with the latter half pushing the pop edges (but not so much). The styles collage together in a surprising clash of sights and sounds and bolster the gumption that Fiona always seem to bring.
In any case, Fiona is back and as better than ever. We’re once again reminded of the uniqueness that she can wield, with her talents, in this sometimes circumspect, musical world.
Hard to beat, indeed.
Below are some highlights from the album that we think are notable, now.
Oh and we give Fiona’s new album our hearty CHF / Two Thumbs Up.
‘I want you to love me’
Exorbitant in love, angst, and a breeze of succulent layers, the piano driven ride of ambitions, throw down with the gumption that is only Fiona can muster. “I want you” she states, with a long extended arm of acceptance and clarity. “To love me” in the dark and in the secret gardens, the vibrance is blasted in this bruising lyrical master piece of craft. It writhes in beautiful broken piano keys, as gentle and wispy as the living caresses of our loves – our enemies. As the song rouses in this caustic deliverance of ecstasy, it ends – as just the beginning of the album.
‘Fetch the Bolt Cutter’
Inside that eye of the storm. A calmer ride of words, glide and glaze your spoken word altitudes. The master class of spoken word, this title track, prepares you in a way that Fiona has been preparing her fans, forever. The charms and chimes, delivered in front the jazzy fretless bass, walks with a cutting stride, just like a walk in a vanilla sky of worries and intermissions. Sunshine of the dank lower class in living, our emotions are taken to a hostage situation, when “shoes not made for … that hill”. Escape is where fantasies happen. It’s the place where you’d like to run away from. Maybe, into. It’s the personal place of freedom, how you deem – but only personal to specifications.
‘Under the table’
Fiona turns on the pop charms in ‘Under the Table’. Drenched in the more current styles of pop, the staggered remittence of Fiona vibes, dance on top of the squeeze box of dance and rhythms. Blues chords from the piano, takes you there where the doors to the downstairs shed, exists and the lock is propped into existence. But don’t let the tinge of pop get you to think that it’s just the same ol’ same ol’. When power is not recognized, it will fester with the exalting emphasis of rights it’s deemed genetic. ‘Under the table’ clamors you to free of yourself from the under-stairs shed. There’s a better world out there. There’s a better ‘you’ out there. Don’t let the outside world keep you locked in self appointed silence.
Complete in the best way possible, this single is the most thrusting and majestic. With a shellack of word and frustrations, the single mangles with anger and happiness, as the ‘jail bird’ of a forgotten era, breaks through in this manicured jazzy and baroque thriller. The rhythmical percussions, define this album and the angular busting of notes on top of note, delivers a powerful post apocalypse of Fiona-ism. It is our favorite single in the album, because of its complexity, its singular directness and the ground shaking precision of the song’s improvised assertions.