|To Venus and Back|
|Studio album / live album by|
|Released||September 20, 1999|
Disc one: 47:50
Disc two: 75:32
|Label||Atlantic (US), East West (Europe)|
|Tori Amos chronology|
|Tori Amos live chronology|
|Singles from To Venus and Back|
To Venus and Back,the fifth album released by singer and songwriter Tori Amos,is a two-disc album set including a studio album and a live album. The first disc,titled Venus:Orbiting,features eleven original songs that find Amos experimenting heavily in electronica. The second disc,Venus Live,Still Orbiting,is a thirteen-track album compiling live tracks recorded from her Plugged '98 tour. This is the first official live release of Amos's career.
Four singles were released from the album:"Bliss",which peaked at number 91 on the Billboard Hot 100,"1000 Oceans","Glory of the 80's" and "Concertina". "Glory of the 80’s" was only released as a single in Australia,the United Kingdom,and continental Europe,while "Concertina" was only released as a single in the United States.
To Venus and Back,which began life as a proposed B-sides album,is sparser both in production and arrangement than From the Choirgirl Hotel,but is similar to its predecessor in that it features overt electronica influences and a relatively subdued piano sound. The album finds Amos's voice and piano subverted in a sonic maze of electronic washes and effects,and some songs,notably "Juárez" and the epic "Dātura" are largely built around these effects. Topics covered on the album include unsolved murdered female maquiladora workers in Ciudad Juárez on the US–Mexico border,hallucinogenic plants,and Napoleon Bonaparte.
In November 1999,Tori Amos was quoted by Pulse Magazine as saying that this record says a lot about the shadows and the shadow world.
The only studio track on the second disc of the album is "Purple People," first released as the B-side to the "Spark" single in 1998 and as a Japanese bonus track on From the Choirgirl Hotel.
The sole track recorded during the To Venus and Back recording sessions that does not appear on the album,nor as a B-side,is the nine-minute "Zero Point". Of the song's exclusion from the album,Amos has said that the song wasn't intentionally left off the album,rather an over-sensitivity about a certain gardening issue led "Dātura" to being included instead.The liner notes of To Venus and Back state,"Zero Point - your time is coming". The song was released seven years later on A Piano:The Collection (2006).
|The A.V. Club||(favourable)|
|Nude as the News||(favourable)|
The studio disc of To Venus and Back is recognized as one of Amos's most experimental yet melodic,and received mixed reviews. Some critics praised its originality,innovation and unpredictable song structures,with one reviewer describing the album as having "some of the best vocals of her career,embedded in modern,special-effects-laden soundscapes that move from electronica-spiced piano pop and hip-hop to ambient space music", while others begrudged the album because of its overuse of electronic instruments and lack of Amos's trademark simplistic sound, most present on albums such as Little Earthquakes (1992) and Under the Pink (1994).
The album received two 2000 Grammy Award nominations:Best Female Rock Vocal Performance for "Bliss" and Best Alternative Music Album.
To Venus and Back,priced higher than Amos's previous releases because of its two-disc format,sold 112,000 copies in the US in its first week and debuted at number 12 on the Billboard 200,number 18 on the Top Canadian Albums,and number 22 on the UK Top 40 ,breaking her run of three consecutive UK Top 10 albums.
Two months after its release in November 1999,the album achieved RIAA Certification,reaching Gold and Platinum sales status simultaneously,due to the release being a double CD set. To Venus and Back remained on the Billboard 200 for 11 weeks,with its final position at # 189 for the week of January 8,2000,before falling off the chart. As of May 2008,the album has sold 458,000 copies in the US,according to Nielsen SoundScan.
All tracks are written by Tori Amos.
|4.||"Glory of the 80's"||4:03|
|4.||"Bells for Her"||5:42|
|8.||"Cloud on My Tongue"||4:58|
Given the conditions under which the album was created, To Venus and Back is unique in that it does not have any studio tracks that serve as B-sides. Instead the album's singles are backed by live tracks recorded from the previous year's tour.
|"Hey Jupiter" (live)||4:32||"Bliss" (1999)|
|"Upside Down" (live)||5:47|
|"Baker, Baker" (live)||3:54||"1000 Oceans" (1999)|
|"Famous Blue Raincoat" (live)||5:25||"Glory of the 80's" (UK) (1999) / |
"Concertina" (US) (2000)
Following the theme of the album's second disc, which is composed of live tracks arranged similarly to an actual concert, the B-sides that appear on the album's singles are live songs performed solo with Amos on the piano. The chart above lists only the songs that were released as B-sides on singles from To Venus and Back.
|United States (RIAA)||Platinum||1,000,000^|
^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.
The album was supported by a short tour in 1999, the "Five and a Half Weeks Tour", which Amos co-headlined with Alanis Morissette beginning a month prior to the release of To Venus and Back. Many referred to Amos as the "opening act" for Morissette because she always performed first; however, this was due only to the logistics of setting up a grand piano for performance. An Amos-only stint, the "To Dallas and Back" tour, also took place, but promotional plans were cut when Amos suffered her third miscarriage in November 1999.
Tori Amos is an American singer-songwriter and pianist. She is a classically trained musician with a mezzo-soprano vocal range. Having already begun composing instrumental pieces on piano, Amos won a full scholarship to the Peabody Institute at Johns Hopkins University at the age of five, the youngest person ever to have been admitted. She had to leave at the age of eleven when her scholarship was discontinued for what Rolling Stone described as "musical insubordination". Amos was the lead singer of the short-lived 1980s pop group Y Kant Tori Read before achieving her breakthrough as a solo artist in the early 1990s. Her songs focus on a broad range of topics, including sexuality, feminism, politics, and religion.
from the choirgirl hotel is the fourth studio album by American singer and songwriter Tori Amos, released on May 5, 1998. A departure from her previous albums, it was more a heavily produced project featuring elements of electronic music and a full rock band sound. The album debuted at number 5 on the Billboard 200 and number 6 in the UK. While falling short of the number 2 debut for her previous album, Boys for Pele (1996), From the Choirgirl Hotel is Amos's strongest debut to date in US sales, selling 153,000 copies in the first week. By 2008, it had sold 778,000 copies in US. In 1999, Amos received two Grammy nominations: Alternative Music Performance, and Female Rock Vocal Performance for "Raspberry Swirl".
Strange Little Girls is a concept album released by singer-songwriter Tori Amos in 2001. The album's 12 tracks are covers of songs written and originally performed by men, reinterpreted by Amos from a female point of view. Amos created female personae for each track and was photographed as each, with makeup done by Kevyn Aucoin. In the United States the album was issued with four alternative covers depicting Amos as the characters singing "Happiness Is a Warm Gun", "Strange Little Girl", "Time", and "Raining Blood". A fifth cover of the "I Don't Like Mondays" character was also issued in the UK and other territories. Text accompanying the photos and songs was written by novelist Neil Gaiman. The complete short stories in which this text appears can be found in Gaiman's 2006 collection Fragile Things.
Boys for Pele is the third studio album by American singer and songwriter Tori Amos. Preceded by the first single, "Caught a Lite Sneeze", by three weeks, the album was released on January 22, 1996, in the United Kingdom, on January 23 in the United States, and on January 29 in Australia. Despite the album being Amos's least radio friendly material to date, Boys for Pele debuted at number two on both the US Billboard 200 and the UK Albums Chart, making it her biggest simultaneous transatlantic debut, her first Billboard top 10 debut, and the highest-charting US debut of her career to date.
Scarlet's Walk is the seventh studio album released by Tori Amos. The 18-track concept album details the cross-country travels of Scarlet, a character loosely based on Amos, as well as the concept of America post–September 11, 2001. The album was the first released by Amos on Epic Records after her split with former label Atlantic Records. After a period of trouble with her last label, Amos proved her fan base was still with her when the album debuted at number 7 in the US, selling 107,000 copies in its first week, and reaching RIAA Gold status about a month after its release.
Under the Pink is the second studio album by singer-songwriter Tori Amos. Upon its release in January 1994, the album debuted atop the UK Albums Chart on the back of the hit single "Cornflake Girl", and peaked at number 12 in the US.
Tales of a Librarian is the first retrospective compilation album by singer/songwriter Tori Amos. Given the option to be involved in the project, Amos elected to take a central role in the production of the collection, released in 2003 on her former label Atlantic Records.
The Beekeeper is the eighth studio album by singer-songwriter Tori Amos. It deals with the topics of death, adultery and romantic conflict, and makes brief reference to ancient Gnostic mysticism from the Apocryphon of John. Sonically, it incorporates Celtic choirs, African drums, and Amos's B-3 Hammond organ.
"Silent All These Years" is a song by American singer-songwriter and musician Tori Amos. It was released as the second single from her debut studio album Little Earthquakes. It was originally released in the United Kingdom in November 1991 via EastWest Records. It was released in North America in 1992 by Atlantic Records and was later used to promote awareness of the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN). In the UK, the single was re-released on August 10, 1992.
A Piano: The Collection is a five-disc box set spanning the first 15 years of the solo career of American singer and song-writer Tori Amos. Released on September 26, 2006 by Rhino Records as part of the contract Amos negotiated with Warner Music Group, the set includes singles, album tracks, B-sides, rarities, demos, and unreleased songs from album sessions.
Tori Amos is an American pianist and singer-songwriter whose musical career began in 1980, at the age of seventeen, when she and her brother co-wrote the song "Baltimore". The song was selected as the winning song in a contest for the Baltimore Orioles and was recorded and pressed locally as a 7" single. From 1984 to 1989, Amos fronted the synth-pop band Y Kant Tori Read, which released one self-titled album with Atlantic Records in 1988 before breaking up. Shortly thereafter, Amos began writing and recording material that would serve as the debut of her solo career. Still signed with Atlantic, and its UK counterpart East West, Amos' initial solo material was rejected by the label in 1990. Under the guidance of co-producers Eric Rosse, Davitt Sigerson and Ian Stanley, a second version of the album was created and accepted by the label the following year.
American Doll Posse is the ninth studio album by American singer-songwriter Tori Amos, released in 2007 by Epic Records. A concept album, American Doll Posse sees Amos assuming the identity of five different female personalities inspired by Greek mythology in order to narrate stories of life in modern America. Themes include opposition to the Iraq War, recording industry misogyny, disillusion, sexuality, personal loss and female empowerment in general. Musically, the album is more rock-oriented than other studio albums by Amos, notably featuring more guitar and drums than previous albums The Beekeeper (2005) and Scarlet's Walk (2002).
Abnormally Attracted to Sin is the tenth solo studio album by American singer-songwriter Tori Amos, released 19 May 2009, in standard and limited CD/DVD edition. The album debuted on Billboard 200 at no. 9, giving Amos her seventh Top 10 album in the US. Unlike Amos' previous releases since 2000, which drew upon various external sources such as feminism, religion and politics, the album is considered a mainly personal album.
Little Earthquakes is the debut solo album by the American singer-songwriter Tori Amos, featuring the singles "Silent All These Years", "China", "Winter" and "Crucify". After Atlantic Records rejected the first version of the album, Amos began working on a second version with her then-boyfriend Eric Rosse. The album was first released in the UK on January 6, 1992, where it peaked at number 14 in the charts.
"Dātura" or "Datura" is a song written and recorded by American singer Tori Amos. It is the ninth song of Amos's fifth record To Venus and Back, which was released in September 1999. It is included in the first disc of the double album subtitled "Orbiting" that contains eleven original studio recordings. The song lists the names of the plants found in Amos's garden and was created during the recording sessions of To Venus and Back. The song's title refers to datura, a plant known for its toxic and hallucinogenic properties. Amos has never performed the song live due to its complex structure and time signatures which makes it hard to reproduce with a live band. However, in 2011 Amos incorporated the "room in my heart" bridge when performing "Take to the Sky" during her concert in Brussels on October 29, 2011 Video on YouTube. She also performed the song in a similar fashion throughout the Unrepentant Geraldines Tour and again on the Native Invader Tour.
Night of Hunters is the twelfth solo studio album by American singer-songwriter Tori Amos, released on September 20, 2011, in the United States through Deutsche Grammophon. It is a concept album that Amos has described as "a 21st century song cycle inspired by classical music themes spanning over 400 years." She pays tribute to classical composers such as Alkan, Bach, Chopin, Debussy, Granados, Satie and Schubert, taking inspiration from their original compositions to create new, independent songs. Regarding the album's concept, she has described it as the exploration of "the hunter and the hunted and how both exist within us" through the story of "a woman who finds herself in the dying embers of a relationship."
Gold Dust is the 13th solo studio album by American singer-songwriter Tori Amos, released on October 1, 2012 by Deutsche Grammophon and Mercury Classics. The album is produced by Amos with arrangements by long-time collaborator John Philip Shenale. Inspired by and following in a similar vein as Amos's previous effort, the classical music album Night of Hunters (2011), Gold Dust features some of her previously released alternative rock and baroque pop songs re-worked in an orchestral setting. The material for Gold Dust, consisting of songs selected by Amos spanning her entire catalogue from Little Earthquakes (1992) through Midwinter Graces (2009), was recorded with the Metropole Orchestra, conducted by Jules Buckley.
Unrepentant Geraldines is the fourteenth studio album by American singer-songwriter and pianist Tori Amos. The album, available on standard CD/digital download, a limited edition CD+DVD, and two disc vinyl LP, was released in Germany on May 9, 2014 by Mercury Classics and May 13, 2014 in the United States by Mercury Classics/Universal Mercury Classics. Unrepentant Geraldines is Amos' eighth studio album to debut in the top 10 of the Billboard 200.
Native Invader is the fifteenth studio album by American singer/songwriter Tori Amos. It was released on September 8, 2017, through Decca Records. Its lead single, "Cloud Riders", was released on July 27, 2017.
Ocean to Ocean is the sixteenth studio album by American singer-songwriter Tori Amos, released on October 29, 2021. A vinyl release followed on January 28, 2022. Amos has supported the album with a 6-date UK/Ireland tour in March 2022, and a 34-date US tour that followed between April 27 and June 17, 2022; EU dates have been postponed to April 5 through April 30, 2023 due to the pandemic.
A two-CD set, one half is a live album and like all such self-indulgences it's mainly unremarkable. It does, however, with the addition of a full band, act as a compass for her new direction. Which mainly means trip-hop