Here are my track by track thoughts on Tori’s new album, American Doll Posse, for anyone that might be interested. (Anyone? Helloooo?)
Yo George - A lot of reviews have picked this one out as one of the best tracks - even though it’s only just over a minute long (maybe they only got that far...). It’s a neat little song, just Tori on piano, which is what she does best. Not sure how this one will stand up to the tests of time - how much longer will George Bush be around in power for? It‘s unusual for Tori to do something so direct - but I like it anyway. 8
Big Wheel - awesome first single. I challenge anyone to resist shaking their butt to this. I love the bit in the middle where Tori just chants ‘I am an MILF’ (even though those silly American radio stations didn‘t love it lol) - all very groovy. 9
Bouncing Off Clouds - Wow, Tori has never done a song like this before. It’s very Kate Bush, very dancey - in fact it makes me want to hire out a nightclub and just dance to it all night. Having the lyrics in the CD booklet brings out some of the hard-to-hear lyrics, such as the background lyric ‘I’ll put on my silver’ (such a cool little clouds reference) - I love that little lyric and I’m putting it on one of my comic character’s t-shirts. 10.
Teenage Hustling - I’m not quite there with this one yet, but as is often the case with Tori, a song can suddenly leap on you a couple of months down the line. The only weird thing about this song is that it sounds like it should be towards the end of the album. 7.
Digital Ghost - Tori’s obviously put the more straight-forward songs at the start of the album, and the experimental ones towards the end. This is another one that hasn’t grabbed me yet (although it’s one of the few ones that I didn’t listen to until the album came out - whereas I think I listened to everything else about 50 times). I don’t normally pay huge attention to lyrics, to be honest, although I do find that Tori’s made a few obvious references in this song (in your ‘net’ etc, all very computer-related), which isn’t like her. (Actually, since writing all this yesterday, this song has grown on me massively!!!) 8 and a half
You Can Bring Your Dog - Blimey, I wasn’t expecting this from a Tori album lol. Like the previous songs, this hasn’t quite grabbed me just yet, but I’m sure it will. I love it when she does the jam thing at the end and goes ‘You can bring your dog/you can bring your mom’. 7.
Mr Bad Man - I heard so many bad things about this song before I actually heard it - and I was expecting something dreadful. I thought it would be like the godawful ‘Ireland’ off the last album - what the hell was that? I absolutely adore this song - again, it’s quite Kate Bushy. Just a huge amount of fun. 9.
Fat Slut - Again, this has grabbed a lot of attention, but I’m not sure why, as it barely gets into gear before it finishes. Ah well. 5.
Girl Disappearing - It’s weird having this one follow the raucous Fat Slut. It’s not my favourite Tori ballad (well, not at the moment, anyway), but it has its moments. 8.
Secret Spell - Again, I heard bad things about this one - bland etc - but I adore it. It’s got a nice, fresh sound to it. (I’m fully aware that six months down the line I’ll probably have gone off this one and Mr Bad Man, and I’ll probably be adoring Teenage, Digital and Dog). 9.
Devils and Gods - Another interlude song that barely gets going. It’s pretty, and it’s one of those rare Tori songs that doesn’t feature any piano. 7.
Body and Soul - I’m still finding the groove of this one, but I do like it. It’s a very surprising Tori song - it reminds me of a cross between Throwing Muses and PJ Harvey. I’m trying to distance myself from the fact it reminds me, in the verses, of Spirit in the Sky and that awful Rachel Stevens pop song (she only really had one, didn’t she). 8.
Father’s Son - This is a gorgeous little gem, so nice to hear so much piano. 8.
Programmable Soda - I thought I would hate this one as I‘m not a huge fan of Tori‘s eccentric, whimsical songs. I saw Tori play it on a daytime TV show (for old people) and first I thought ‘okaaaaay’ and then I thought ‘did she just say ‘genital panic’ on daytime TV?’ (yes she did). I love it though, and I love her singing on this one. 8.
Code Red - Oh my god. Now this is where the album really turns a corner - it’s pretty much all top-notch from here on. This song is fucking fantastic - it took me a few listens - it’s kind of a groovier sister of ‘iieee’ from her fourth album. Probably my favourite at the moment. 10.
Roosterspur Bridge - Swoon. I’ve been waiting for Tori to do a sad little song like this for a long, long time. Wow, takes my breath away and brings a teeny tear to my eyes. 10.
Beauty of Speed - At first I just dismissed this as another Carbon/Barons of Suburbia song, but this just about carves its very own little niche. This is pretty much a perfect, beautiful song - oh and I love the ‘temper-ature‘ lyric. 9.
Almost Rosey - This is a great song, but my only problem with it is that I heard it totally acoustic first, so it’s a shock to hear so much instrumentation on it. I do think the instrumentation adds to the song, it gives it a sense of drama, but maybe it could have been introduced a bit later on in the song (especially the guitar). It just seems maybe a bit over-produced. It’s a gorgeous song though. 9.
Velvet Revolution - One of the shorter songs on the album (and one that I’d have been happy to see go off the album) - it’s fine for what it is, but not really my cup of tea. 6.
Dark Side of the Sun - I guess this is kind of the show-piece/climax of the album and I wasn’t looking forward to this one, mainly because I don’t always like the showpiece songs on Tori albums - or at least they’re not normally my favourites (Little Earthquakes, Yes Anastasia, Scarlet’s Walk, The Beekeeper). This one blows my mind though - a real powerhouse of a song. 9.
Posse Bonus - hehe fantastic - just a whole bunch of fun. I was worried this one might irritate me a bit, but I really don’t think it will. 8.
Smokey Joe - This is another one that I am less familiar with, but I can tell it’s really going to grow on me. I absolutely adore the idea behind this song - it’s kind of an insane duet with one of the Doll Posse (Pip) - they practically sing on top of each other and you can only hear the lyrics if you check out the lyrics sheet. I love it when Tori layers her lyrics like this - she did it on Space Dog and Doughnut Song. 8.
Dragon - Again, not very familiar with this one yet, but I know it’s going to become one of my favourite ever Tori songs - I can just tell. The piano at the start just sends shivers down my spine - and I wish Tori would do more piano-based songs like this. 9.
Miracle - This is a kind of b-side thing - an extra available through i-tunes. It’s a great little pop song, I really like it - glad it’s not on the album though! 7.