Has she got a full deck?
Fiona Apple - Oh Sailor - So, for those that have been following the drama fest surrounding the release of Fiona Apple's forthcoming album, the full album is circulating online and can now be heard. The leak isn't terribly high quality, but it's good enough to show that the album is. And it's a phenomenal album. Simply amazing really. I've never been huge on Fiona, as in the past, she's tended towards either not having enough control over her own work (the schmaltzily overproduced and overmarketed "Criminal"), or too much (The title of When the Pawn... is proof enough of the problem with overindulgence). And yet in the end, I've always come down on the side of defending her, much to the befuddlement of some of my more rockist friends. The reason's pretty simple really. Fiona Apple is like Nick Cave's fucked up little sister, spinning out murder ballads as wordy as they are gorgeous, dressing up sparse melodies with huge arrangements. "Oh Sailor" is a classic example. The song is simple - almost too simple, a basic 12 bar blues piano, and a ballad from a confused lover. But Jon Brions production comes in and just injects the song full to the brim with syrupy strings, making it sound like something out of a bizarre broadway production, and Fiona's voice just sounds utterly and completely broken. It suggests Sony's reasons for not releasing the album have very little to do with the album, and very much to do with Fionas reluctance to engage in the practice that gave the Wilco story such a happy ending. Fiona's always been known for being a bit tempremental on the road (I remember her walking out on a gig at Roseland in NY some years ago because the sound quality at Roseland was not up to her standards - though at Roseland, the sound does, admittedly, suck), and I could easily see her refusing to tour. Especially in her supposed present state. Supposedly Brion had to beg her to record this one. Thank god he did.
This track will come down tonite, or as soon as somebody from either Sony, or Fiona's camp emails me and says "TAKE IT DOWN". I have no desire to fight with anyone or get sued here.
Thanks to David for the nice work on the new logo, seen above. I welcome any and all unsolicited gifts of art. If they're good, as you can see, I'l use 'em. Also, Uncritical has relaunched as a daily, and has an awesome new look as well. Go tell Chris I said hi.