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Fiona Apple In Chicago

Tribune rock critic Greg Kot awarded Fiona Apple's new album 3.5 out of four stars in a review in which he called the recording "a raw, unsettling listen" filled with "jagged arrangements, lurching rhythms and off-kilter melodies" that lay out "tales of personal mayhem."

WBEZ music blogger Jim DeRogatis couldn't disagree more; on a recent edition of Sound Opinions he told Kot that listening to Apple was a "chore."

"You're so wrong," Kot replied.

So which is it?

Apple was in town last week at the Chicago Theatre; I've pulled some YouTube videos so you can judge for yourself - though obviously not all selections are from the new record. And if it makes any difference, here's what a couple others think.

Ryan Dombal, Pitchfork: "[T]he most distilled Fiona Apple album yet . . . Every single waveform is pierced with purpose." Nine out of ten stars.

Jeremy D. Larson, Consequence of Sound: "Apple's vocal violence is both hard to listen to and yet totally punk rock . . . succeeds in creating a singular world more daring than any of Apple's previous records and one of the most daring pop records in recent history." Four-and-half out of five stars.

Also, here's a much talked-about New York magazine feature/profile.

And now, Apple at the Chicago Theatre.

(One thing I will say about Kot's incredibly well-written - as usual - concert review: I'm not sure Fiona looks "fierce"; she looks anorexic, which is worrying when it comes to her. Only her voice seems physically strong.)


1. It's Only Make Believe (Conway Twitty covert)


2. Criminal.


3. Extraordinary Machine. (Security made christeph stop recording.)


4. Anything We Want.


5. Shadowboxer.


6. Carrion.


7. Werewolf.


8. Paper Bag.


9. Daredevil.


10. I Know.


11. On The Bound.


12. And here's a snippet from her Lincoln Hall performance in March.


Comments welcome.


1. From Steve Rhodes:

I didn't really give an opinion myself here because I haven't heard the new record. In fact, the only record of hers I do have (and have heard the whole way through) is Extraordinary Machine. It's a good record and the title track is, indeed, extraordinary. But DeRo makes a point in that sometimes listening to Apple can get tedious. She's immensely talented, intriguing and - at times - mesmerizing. But I wish she would learn to rock, and change up her palate a little more.


Posted on July 14, 2012

MUSIC - Muddy Waters Museum Has Mojo.
TV - WGN Now Trump TV.
POLITICS - Trustbust Entertainment.
SPORTS - Tweeting Foles.

BOOKS - The Endurance Of The Rubik's Cube.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Charles E. Cheese Boo-tacular.

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