1. 14:07 18th Nov 2012

    Notes: 13

    Tags: fiona apple

    There was a new Fiona Apple song yesterday and nobody told me? INTERNET. YOU HAD ONE JOB.

    The chorus might be applicable to that NYT thing I haven’t read (and will never read, so that “might” stays; it’s amazing, as are the strings.

  2. 11:18 18th Jun 2012

    Notes: 29

    Tags: fiona apple

    Her unique musical DNA—fusing jazz and the old standards with a dose of post-sixties singer-songwriter — seems inextricable from her biological one, a line of workman American performers steeped in vaudeville, big band, theater, and cable television. So that, in “Every Single Night,” the lines “Little wings of white-flamed / Butterflies in my brain” come with a slight fluttering; there is a quickening, a crescendo through “Swarm the belly, swelling to a blaze”; until, by the time “That’s when the pain comes in,” her contralto rings, erupting to accent when in an E-flat that, taken out of context, could be Callas’s, not to mention the almost diabolical use of robato to construct a chorus out of “brain,” stretched into ten notes, ten slurring syllables, in what it occurs to me very early one morning later in her living room in California, the two of us altered to the precipice of poisoning, green stars orbiting above us, her extraordinary voice ricocheting across space: musical onomatopoeia.

    Holy shit! It’s a Fiona Apple quote that talks about her music and not her gaunt skeletal emotional femininity! WE’VE GOT A MAVERICK HERE, FOLKS.

    (There’s great stuff elsewhere in here, too. This is the first major indicator that it’ll be forthcoming.)

  3. Fiona Apple placeholder

    Yes, I’ve heard the whole thing. Yes, I have thoughts on it. I’m deliberately sitting with them.

  4. Today’s track roundup / endorsement / whatnot! I really like the Karijord single, by the way; it struck me upon first listen, I went to Google so much more about her and found out I’d written her up ages ago when I was on Blogspot, with pretty much the exact same reaction. I should keep better notes.

  5. 12:51

    Notes: 6

    Tags: fiona apple

    Pitchfork: What do you do when you’re online?

    [Fiona Apple]: I like slideshows.



    (but seriously, this is a fantastic interview.)

  6. Four Details That Made It To Page One Of The NYT’s Fiona Apple Profile Before Anything About The New Record Except The Title

    1. At the SoHo Grand Hotel the management opened up a bar-lounge that’s usually closed in the afternoons for a private interview with Ms. Apple. 

    2. The broad shoulders of a green Steve Madden jacket helped fill out her gaunt figure; she said giving up heavy drinking and adopting a gluten-free diet had made her weight drop sharply.

    3. At 34 Ms. Apple no longer looks like the teenager she was when she released her 1996 debut album, “Tidal.”

    4. Her pale blue eyes have grown even more prominent and striking. Yet she speaks with the voluble ups and downs — pensive, breathlessly eager, giggly — of a young girl. 

    (link) (h/t bmichael)

  7. 11:22

    Notes: 63

    Reblogged from bmichael

    Tags: fiona appleawesomeness

    image: Download


The singer Fiona Apple with a portrait by the artist Patrick Bucklew of her pit bull mix, Janet.by Béatrice de Géa for The New York Times

Wow - what an amazing photograph.

I needed this on my blog.


    The singer Fiona Apple with a portrait by the artist Patrick Bucklew of her pit bull mix, Janet.
    by Béatrice de Géa for The New York Times

    Wow - what an amazing photograph.

    I needed this on my blog.

  8. There are about a dozen reasons at this point why The Idler Wheel might become my album of the year. Here are maybe ten or so.

    That last part was crucial; you can build the perfect promo cycle, but you can’t make fans materialize or return if the conditions aren’t right. But the conditions for a Fiona Apple comeback were perfect. Nobody can quite decide whether music’s in the middle of an ’80s revival, an early ’90s revival, a late ’90s or even aturn-of-the-century revival (it’s really a bit of them all), but Apple meets at least some of those nebulous criteria. This alone doesn’t guarantee a comeback, though,–not everyone recording then’s been bequeathed such nostalgia, as a quick glance over a Buffy soundtrack or Lilith Fair bill will make obvious. For every rediscovered act or genre, there are dozens more of equal quality, if not prominence, that remain buried. Even Apple, one of the most successful of her genre, didn’t get this level of coverage in the ’90s.

    Apple, though, had three major things going for her. Enough fans and critics had enough residual affection for her work to make her among the first to be considered for reappraisal. That happened largely because of her lyrics, which get called “confessional” mainly because they don’t always reflect well on her: the fetching fuck-off of “Criminal” (a pose, sure, and problematic, but seldom done this well), the utterly serious “Sullen Girl,” which mires itself in oblivion without any irony to protect itself, and especially something like “Fast As You Can,” which defiantly, unashamedly says everything the dude-magazine crowd don’t want you to say or even think. It’s the exact antidote to the current climate, which encourages people to share so much yet reveal so little, and to so many people, it was refreshing.

    Apple’s other big break might’ve been an accident but undoubtedly helped: Lana Del Rey’s hyped-then-thrashed Born to Die campaign, which got criticized in dozens of damning ways but none more damning than calling it a weaker Fiona Apple album. Enough was written about that album to flood the world with unfavorable Apple comparisons, then a few months later, presto: the real thing emerges. And real it truly is.

  9. I’m not saying that there is something universally “feminine” about Fiona Apple’s music, or that her songs inherently appeal to any one group of people more than another. But I do think the reason why some women and queer people feel an affinity with her music is that it displays the destabilizing power of “oversharing,” the strangely radical gesture of presenting your mind and your body and your life as it is— which is always going to provide more of a release to the people who’ve been cautioned against sharing those sorts of things in the past. “The thrill of [Apple’s songs],” Nitsuh Abebe wrote after an Austin show, “is just a certain frankness about reality, and the sense of an artist who can cut casually to the core of what life is like.” To me, the sudden triumph of her return exists in the same cultural moment as people sharing photos of gay couples who’ve just been married, or female protesters (hilariously) trolling Rick Perry’s Facebook wall with questions about menstruation to protest his stance on reproductive health. It’s the thrill of voices dismissed as silly or excessive in the past now deriving power from the ordinary details of their everyday lives.

    Lindsay Zoladz

    1) This is what I fumbled at writing earlier. You should read it.

    2) If this is happening for Fiona Apple, when can it happen for Tori Amos? The comparison’s inaccurate in so many ways, but here’s why I bring it up so often. It wasn’t for me when I was 15 and stubbornly refused to listen to either, afraid that I’d turn into one of those girls who liked Tori and Fiona. I didn’t know who those girls even were or what they thought; I just knew that those two artists were off-limits. Of course, this story only ends one way: I got into Fiona Apple, then Tori Amos, became well and truly one of those girlsand then I found myself in my tenth-grade English class staring at someone’s class presentation on the wall, scrawled with Fiona lyrics and half-heartbreaking even for a stranger, and wondering who I missed knowing.

    (One way the comparison’s inaccurate, though: Tori’s music skews fundamentally older. Abnormally Attracted to Sin is about oversharing as it applies to motherhood and middle age: fear of affairs in “Fire to Your Plain,” domestic malaise in “Starling,” suicidal feelings in “Maybe California.” It’s a little like Fever Ray in that regard.)

    3) What’s striking, for me, about Fiona Apple’s (over)sharing, though, isn’t her sharing mundane details but how she shares things that reflect poorly on her. The opening lines of “Fast As You Can,” for instance. You don’t say thoseever. Everything you’ll ever read or learn about gender relations tells you not to. Identifying as a “sullen girl.” Making the mistakes in “A Mistake.” In other words, saying “[speeches] you wish I’d swallow” from “To Your Love.” I’m hesitant to follow this line of thought too far, because it’d lead to agreeing with a couple people I really don’t agree with. Nor is it something she pioneered or exemplified, and there’s a real risk of glamorizing/Skins-izing this sort of confession. But it’s something I’ve sought out and still seek out; a resurgence can only be a good thing.

  10. Overheard: “Lana Del Rey is such an extension of this!”—Woman who earlier had threatened her friend that she probably was going to be unhappy at the show and would be heading to the bar once she felt the first flicker of dissatisfaction.

    Sound of the City


    (Related: Gawker had some headline today about ticks being the new plague of 2012, and I seriously misread it at first as “tickets” and thought I was being personally trolled. THIS IS HOW RIDICULOUS THIS FIONA APPLE SHOW I DID NOT GO TO HAS MADE MY BRAIN.)

    (I think I’m in some extended rage stage of ticketing grief. If you are this anonymous person, I am sorry. Just… this for me would be like seeing Kristin Hersh or Tori Amos live, right?)