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Thread: Little Earthquakes

  1. #1
    Lyrical acuity and mum-smarts menju56's Avatar
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    Little Earthquakes



    TORI AMOS
    LITTLE EARTHQUAKES

    (ATLANTIC)
    Released: January/February 1992
    Chart: UK No.14 / US No.54



    Non-album:


    I think Little Earthquakes was really about looking at things I had to look at, my first door opening up to things I'd closed off since I was a little kid. I'd numbed parts of myself so they wouldn't get hurt.


    ____








  2. #2
    your veil is quietly becoming none roominmyheart's Avatar
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    This was the album that started it all for me way back in 1991. Constant presence in my life since. I have been wondering lately what my life would be like had I never heard this so early on in my life. Tori has been an influencing presence in my life for literally 2/3 of it. I wonder at what point I would have discovered her, or what I would think now if I was just hearing one of the newer songs. I still think that she is making music that does not sound like other people out there in the industry, which is what I am usually attracted to. Any new(er) fans that can speak to the experience of looking back at Tori retrospectively, all the way to LE?

  3. #3
    your veil is quietly becoming none roominmyheart's Avatar
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    *accidental double post*

  4. #4
    Why is this happening to me? beanstew's Avatar
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    The very first Tori song I heard was Winter on a compilation album of female performers. I was blown away and immediately bough LE. That must have been in 92 or 93. I've been listening ever since.

  5. #5
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    I became a Tori Amos fan in '94, during the UTP-era. I can't remember if I got LE before or after Boys for Pele in '96. I definitely got it before FTCGH.

    Anyway, for awhile after I became obssessed with UTP, (still my favorite) tracking down LE was a big goal. I remember staring at the italicized song titles in the BMG music club flyer under LE's entry: Silent All These Years, Crucify, Precious Things, etc. Silent in particular (which I had never heard yet) occupied a mythical status in my mind. I conceived of it as an emotional masterpiece before I even heard it!, (based on the title, I was a teenager, so yeah). Of course I felt that I had been silent/unable to speak too.

    Anyway, then one summer day I finally got LE. I had heard (and taped) "Crucify" off the radio - but to hear it on my cd player blasting in CD quality was something quite else. Those kick drums. The couplet about "gotta kick for a dog/BEGGING for love" made the hairs on my arms and neck stand up. I would rewind that little part (probably not good for the cd!) and play it over and over. And then the pleading in her voice when she sings - "where those angels??," wow - that packed an emotional wallop too.

    I remember staring at the shot of the earrings clanging in the booklet and trying to figure out what it was (I hadn't seen the SATY video yet). I remember singing the opening lines to Silent All These Years in the car and my brother rolling his eyes at me.

    I remember being stunned - jaw on the floor stunned - that "Precious Things" was an actual song that someone had written and I was listening to. It seemed seared from my soul. Operatic vocals - and it was like opera to me! So much EMOTION. Then the frenzied, cascading, it's-all-spilling-out bridge, wow.

    I remember listening to "Mother" on hot summer nights, with the window opened - and that intro. Sometimes I would just stop the song just before the vocals start and just keep listening to the intro. So much resignation, sadness, and a sense of being propelled forward by life whether you're ready or not.

    "Me and a Gun" I related to in spite of never being the victim of sexual abuse. I think in spite of Fiona Apple's slam of Tori as being "the poster girl for rape" - MAAG transcends it's subject matter. I could "hear" Tori's brow furrowed with anguish and sincerity when she sings, Tell me what's right?. And the melody just killed me, particuraly during the "Barbados" lines.

    Anyway, it's not an album I revist that much, but what an emotional powerhouse! I still think about the "doesn't take much to rip us into pieces" line - the sense of community that Tori was creating among sensitive souls and the likelihood of the cycle of emotional tulmult (Little Earthquakes) repeating itself (here we go again). I imagine and hope that a whole new generation of young girls and guys are discovering LE and that it still speaks to them. Not that only teenagers can like the album but it has that questing spirit of discovery and coming of age down pat.

    Sorry if this was a dumb post - I felt like walking down memory lane!

  6. #6
    Loves ponies. Hates phonies. Regina Phalange's Avatar
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    Yay for all the old timers. (nothing against the n00bs, but so many people have dropped off over the years that it's nice to see so many hanging in still)

    A friend made a mix tape for me in 94 and it had Precious Things and Crucify, I believe, on it. I had heard MAAG previously, but didn't really think about it much. I wore that freaking tape out over the summer. Those two songs. Amazing. Another friend made a copy of the whole album and I would listen to it over and over and over. It was poetic, yet approachable. Deep, but not full of itself. And I had played piano, so hearing it like this? freaking awesome. Elton John and Billy Joel didn't play like this.

    To this day, i sheepishly admit, I have not purchased my own copy of LE. But since I've bought UTP and BGP twice each (cassettes, then CDs), I don't feel too bad.

    I totally get what roominmyheart was saying too. Tori has been a HUGE part of my life for 16 years. That's half my life. Liking her has influenced what else I've liked and been able to appreciate. What if I hadn't heard that mix tape? What if I hadn't gone on to copy the whole thing off someone else? The music has been there for me in a way that no person ever has and I can't imagine that I would be who I am without it.

    It's like in Love, Actually when Emma Thompson is talking about Joni Mitchell and says "I love her, and true love lasts a lifetime. Joni Mitchell is the woman who taught your cold English wife how to feel." Tori is that for me. I'm not good about expressing emotions or even being able to identify what I'm feeling, so sometimes music is the only way I can figure things out. Little Earthquakes started that for me and as much as I like later stuff, I can't imagine any piece of music being more influential in my life than LE. Pele had a huge impact, but I wouldn't have heard Pele without LE and Pele helped me get through stuff, not change me completely.

  7. #7
    This was my second album after Scarlet's Walk and I fell in love instantly. It doesn't get played as much as the other albums and generally lurks around the bottom of my list but sometimes I revisit it and awe at its genius.

  8. #8
    whose wheels are squeaking arsonist samael's Avatar
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    This album was a very good friend of mine. I will always be thankful of that.

  9. #9
    Did you ever go clear? Alejandro's Avatar
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    China was the first Tori song I ever heard. I bought a bargain pack of 12" singles (5 or so 12" singles wrapped so you couldn't see what you were buying) and China was one of them. I still have the 12" now framed on my spare room wall.
    Then a few months later I was visiting a friend who had LE on vinyl. He said that he was going to convert me to a new singer/songwriter and bet me that I would buy LE myself before the year was out - how right he was.

    I loved everything on it with the exception of Me & A Gun and Mother. I don't know why, but Mother took years to work its magic on me and now it is one of my favorite tracks on LE. Me & A Gun just chills me and I always, always skip it. I doubt I will ever be able to listen to it comfortably.

    I had my copy signed across the front cover at a M&G years ago and I adore how her signature looks in vivid blue marker. It is one of my most treasured items and looks so so so much better than my signed SW or BfP. In fact, I love the organic look of the single & LP covers from this era, I think the imagary is very powerful and really compliments the music. The music vids also compliment the feel of the album for me.

    By the time UTP came out I had all the LE singles and was completely hooked.

    Without this album who knows which artists I would be into now.

  10. #10
    the unhappy worker waitressboy's Avatar
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    Excuse me but can I be you for a while?
    My dog wonít bite if you sit real still
    I got the anti-Christ in the kitchen yelliní at me again
    Yeah, I can hear that


    That's maybe the best stanza ever written.
    When he woke up, the dinosaur was still there.

  11. #11
    Senior Member pancakefrompele's Avatar
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    LE is so fresh and young. I think that's the most profound quality of this record is its youth. 20 years later, and it still sounds new to my ears. This album has some of the best production Tori has over released. It collects dust quite a bit for me (like some of the rest of you), but when I play it I get sentimental, a little sad, and a little joyful. It's a beautiful, beautiful album.

  12. #12
    Science Bitch Scottish Woman's Avatar
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    I was relatively late to the Tori band-wagon myself. I remember hearing Silent All These Years being played on the chart show on the radio, after which the announcer said "O...K...that was Tori Amos, now here's Right Said Fred" My mum had a female compilation album which had Winter on it, and while I loved the song (without really appreciating who it was), she would always skip it. And she still would to this day. Anyways, I didn't actually buy a Tori CD until 1997, when I bought Under the Pink in the sale (and I am ashamed to say, for Cornflake Girl, which I had heard on the radio).

    I got Little Earthquakes the next Easter. I brought the CD home, put it in my crappy CD player, and the first few bars were just astounding. Crucify remains one of my favourites to this day. I can't remember a time before or any time since I've played a CD and just stopped everything. I remember thinking "this is what songwriting is, this is perfection". I played that CD to death, took it to France with me on my placement year as part of a select few. I still have it, all dog-eared and over-played.

    I really loved the fact that an entire disc of A Piano was dedicated to this album, it was very interesting to hear the different takes on some of the songs.

    I wait patiently for a crystal-clear version of Winter: The Percussion Mix (I was hoping she would play this version at the orchestra show.) So long story short: Desert Island Disc

  13. #13
    One of the most important albums to come out of the 90's (or any other decade, for that matter). 'Nuff said.

    When I'm really honest with myself, this album takes 2nd place behind Pele.

  14. #14
    Lyrical acuity and mum-smarts menju56's Avatar
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    When I first heard it I found it so striking and original. I listened to it about four times in two days. It's easy to forget how strong it is because of a) overplaying and b) what came after, but it's really a wonderful record. I know Pele and Choirgirl are generally thought of by fans as her best work, but I think she'll be most remembered at large for LE.

  15. #15
    Cloudbusting red_talula's Avatar
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    LE was my first Tori album when I started listening to her back in 2000. It meant so much to be over the next few years and because of that it will always have a special place in my heart even though I don't listen to Tori nearly as much these days as I used to. The only two songs I normally skip on the album is China and MAAG.

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