Oh Tori Amos, you have disappointed me

It’s been all over the metal news sites in the last couple of days – Tori Amos said some dumb shit about heavy metal and all the metal people are getting all worked up about it.

I was going to ignore it, as jumping on controversial issues is not really my style. But, I think that some of the metal sites and blogs are saying even dumber shit about what Tori said and that’s kinda annoying me. So what the hell, here’s my two groszy (hey, I live in Poland now, that’s the local currency).

Firstly, a lot of metal people are huffing and puffing about “who is she anyway”. The best way I can think of to describe Tori Amos is as an alternative music icon. It’s ok for metal people to have never heard of her (I’m sure she’s never heard of Gojira) but I don’t think it’s ok to dismiss her as “some unknown pop singer”. She’s not popular and she’s certainly not a pop singer. She is a bit avante garde (Blabbermouth described her as eccentric) and she’s been at music-making for a very long time so she deserves some respect. I always thought of her as someone who was intelligent and educated about music, as well as someone who held views and attitudes outside of the mainstream, even if I’m not a big fan of all her work myself.

So, I am genuinely surprised by the comments that she made, that seem to imply that she thinks there’s no emotion in heavy metal music. From Blabbermouth, your source for all news controversial or banal:

Amos said, “Sometimes you don’t know how music affects people. I embrace that because I don’t think that just because I talk about emotional stuff that it’s not motherfucker stuff. I’ll stand next to the hardest fucking heavy metal band on any stage in the world and take them down, alone, by myself. Gauntlet laid down, see who steps up. See who steps up!”

She continued, “I’ll take them down at 48. And they know I will. Because emotion has power that the metal guys know is just you can’t touch it. Insanity can’t touch the soul. It’s going to win every fucking time.”

So there you go. Even someone you thought was musically educated and intelligent can spout dumb-arse mainstream stereotypes to grab a few headlines. I actually feel sorry for her more than anything if her musical experience is so cocooned that she thinks an entire style of music exists without emotion. Its actually kind of laughable, which makes me wonder if it’s just a publicity stunt.

A weird one if it is! What do you think? Dumb shit, right?

~ by goatlady on September 23, 2011.

5 Responses to “Oh Tori Amos, you have disappointed me”

  1. There are tons of people (metal people) around here that adore Tori Amos. I have never got into her stuff, and I think honestly her music is just pop.

    But I’m disappointed that she said this because she is not ignorant about metal as a whole.

    But oh my lord she’s ignorant about specifics. I’ll wager she’s never heard much doom, or funeral doom. She’s never heard the heart-wrenchingly beautiful songs of While Heaven Wept, songs that Never Fail to make me cry. She’s never heard the magnificence of bands like Twisted Tower Dire. She could not say that the brilliance of Operation Mindcrime as a whole couldn’t match her songs.

    They fucking blow her twaddle out of the water.

    Her comments were also a publicity stunt on her most recent album launch publicity cycle. So let’s not take it too seriously. She sure did get publicity out of it!

  2. one of her best friends is Maynard James Keenan, he rings her up and sings her to sleep if she’s had a bad day! I think this is 100% publicity and nothing to do with her actual opinion about metal.

  3. I Don’t think she’s entirely wrong… maybe she’s been a bit missunderstood… She’s not only friend to Maynard James Keenan, she recorded with Robert Plant and Trent Reznor (among others), she made her own versions of a Slayers song (just to name one heavy metal band), etc. And musicians as James Munky Shaffer from Korn are public admirers of her music.
    The thing is, that emotionaly speaking heavy metal is not able to touch some certains emotional strings that she does with her music. (At least not as heavy metal) whenever a heavy metal band wants to be a little more moody, or a little more blue, they start playing Power Ballads or Blues, but whatever they play is certainly not heavy metal (if you know what I mean)… In that way, I agree that she would win every fuckin’ time.
    I bet that no metal band could make a song about a rape or a miscarriage in such an emotional way like she does… And (In my opinion) and with all do respect Biodagar some of the bands you mention might not be “the hardest fucking metal band on stage” she was talking about.

    • I think the main point is less about what she actually said, and more that if she didn’t want to be misunderstood, she shouldn’t have made a sweeping, generalising, stereotyping statement like she did. It was obviously a publicity move and a stupid one.

  4. As a long standing fan of Tori (18 years) and a longer standing fan of metal (30 + years), I am assuming Tori did not have the time to elaborate on her remark. I love Tori tremendously and metal equally. The only inference I can draw is that Tori was talking about the current state of most metal. It’s true then, very much. How often do you see a band like SiKth or Converge or Corelia or Kadinja etc. come along that steps away from the common format and does something different or even slightly emotion oriented? They try, and they fail. Then again there are bands like Voivod or Meshuggah, that appealed very differently to emotions other than the kind Tori deals with. She really should have elaborated, but even if she doesn’t, I’m not going to knock her for it. What she said is true in part. Props for tossing the gauntlet.

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