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Oor (the Netherlands)
March 2005

Review of The Beekeeper

The journey continues... But don't be afraid, Tori's here and she's holding your hand. We're uncertain where she'll lead us, but the scent of flowers soothes us. Tori's nineth album consists out of six different gardens. And in those gardens we get introduced to all these girls and women, who're still in Tori's head. And yes, they're still struggeling with their sexual identity. This album isn't easy to interpret, like usual Tori sings about mythology and symbolism. The war in Iraq is also very prominent on this album, certainly in songs like: 'Barons Of Surburbia', 'General Joy' and 'Mother Revolution'. The duet with the Irish singer-songwriter Damien Rice, 'The Power Of Orange Knickers', is incredibly beautiful, but 'Parasol' and 'Sleeps With Butterflies' are also very powerful songs, typical decent Tori songs. But however, nineteen songs is a long ride and you'll possibly loose yourself in this tough but intresting material.

Annemarie Van Looij.

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Tori Amos Interview

Like always, Myra Ellen Amos's music consists out of female spirituality and sexuality. Tori, will you never be tired of this subject?

'Not as long as there is so much abuse against women in the world. It's time women open their eyes and get themselves off the cross, 'cos us women need the wood. It's time we make our own choices, that's why I've chosen to write from the angle of the bees. I've got a little story and it goes like this... Honey has always been the nectar of the Gods. One day, a bee went to Jupiter and gave him honey. Jupiter granted him a wish as a thankful gift for the honey. The bee asked him if he could help him to stop people from stealing his honey. Jupiter told the bee that it's in human nature to steal. He gave the bee a sting, so he could sting the people who stole his honey. But as soon as he would sting a human, he would die. This would be a sacrifice which protects the Queen bee and her grubs. This is how I see it in real life too. The destiny of working bees, the women, is very comparable with what us women go through. The men stole our honey. Nowadays a lot of women open their eyes and see how they have been abused for centuries. They re-discover their divineness. Us women have always been kept dumb. Nowadays, she has access to a lot of information and she can finally ask the questions, questions which she has always wanted to ask.'

Men are often discribed negatively in your stories. Is there no divineness in them?

'I think the man is as divine as the woman. But I can only go from my own perspective and own experiences. The masculine divineness is pretty ok. Like in the song 'Parasol'. Here a woman has to fight for her way of life. And it's not about a war against terrorists, but a war against a friend, a lover, or a collegue. He doesn't want to respect the choices she makes, the evolution she goes through or the freedom she seeks. He wants to attack her on every level and tries to put her down. This is the problem she has to deal with.'

The war in Iraq also plays a role in this album...

'All these soldiers in Iraq are sons of mothers. These mothers get told that their sons have to sacrifice their life for our Christian beliefs, for peace, and only after making this sacrifice you live like a real Christian. Just like God sacrified his only son for the sins of humans. I think God and Jesus feel betrayed by these sort of quotes. Mary, Magdalene, and Mother Earth try to contact us women... 'We need you!' My character in the song 'The Beekeeper' tries to contact 'Sofia', mother of God, and asks her how she can change the world. Sofia tells her that Eve asked her the same question in the past, and tells her to do the thing she is prohibited to do by her son, and that's to eat from the forbidden fruit. "Only then will you see how I look at the world and humanity." And so it goes that every song on the album is a forbidden fruit in each garden.'

Can you understand when people who listen to your albums, can't understand you anymore?

'I've thought about that a lot. But I think people shouldn't try to interpret my songs literally. When you listen to my music, doors get opened in your soul and you'll understand the message in your own way. It's just like Jesus said: 'This is for the ones who can listen, who understand what listening really is.'

Annemarie Van Looij

[translated from Dutch by Sarah Dekeersgieter]


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