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Thread: To Venus and Back

  1. #1
    Lyrical acuity and mum-smarts menju56's Avatar
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    Jun 2010

    To Venus and Back


    Released: September 1999
    Chart: UK No.22 / US No.12

    • Precious Things
    • Cruel
    • Cornflake Girl
    • Bells For Her
    • Girl
    • Cooling
    • Mr. Zebra
    • Cloud On My Tongue
    • Sugar
    • Little Earthquakes
    • Space Dog
    • Waitress
    • Purple People

    • Zero Point (released 2006)

    After the Plugged tour, I sort of walked into a fierce calm. I didn’t need to be someone’s daughter, wife, or mother - even though I am a daughter and a wife, and motherhood kind of just slipped through time and space for me. The record is just about being a woman and waking up every day... Most songs didn’t come until the title was in place. My friend Natalie looked at me at one point and said, ‘You know you would go to Venus, or that you’ve been there.’ If you’re gonna approach the Venus realm, seduction lives there, obsession lives there, trustworthy lust lives there, decadence lives there, control lives there.
    This is the fastest one [record] we’ve ever done. Sometimes it just takes you longer to do something; you can’t hear it or see it, and you’re kind of half-present. But we were very tweaked, and we were very present, and this record was demanding us to be very present. She was so seductive none of us could sleep - none of us wanted to. It was like some Dyonisian frenzy. We didn’t want to stop. It was a fierce calm.


  2. #2


    I picked up a CD-R of the album in some record shop in Camden market for 50 at the start of August 1999. I played it non-stop for about a day and a half until I dropped my portable CD player in the sink :/ To this day I associate the album with wandering round London on holiday.

    I love the production, and could imagine both ZP and Datura having been on this album. Definitely one of my favourite Tori albums.

    And the live disc has the perfect versions of Waitress and Cruel.

  3. #3
    Always rocks the Cheeto harder. ChasingTornados's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    Part 3 of the holy trinity for me. It's absolutely amazing and I adore it. I was so disappointed when I bought the digipack in New York, unwrapped it at the Amsterdam airport and discovered a HUGE crack in the disc. I still don't know how that happened.. (wrapped, unopened cd from Barnes & Noble?!? Like what the crap?). Still trying to find a replacement copy that's not uberexpensive.. (it's still €20 here in the record stores-if they have it).

    I love all tracks, besides Josephine (I know, blasphemy). The music is just to die for!

    And I agree about the live disc. Cruel and Little Earthquakes on here are like ultimate versions

  4. #4
    I absolutely adore Juarez, Lust, and Riot Poof on the record to pieces. The live disc has definitive recordings of Precious Things, Cruel, Sugar, Little Earthquakes, Space Dog, and Waitress.

  5. #5
    Lyrical acuity and mum-smarts menju56's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    I'll post something more in-depth about Venus at a later date, but I have to use this opportunity to post this Juarez. It could well be the most intense and powerful thing I've ever seen from her. It's an incredible performance on its own, but when you factor in that this was less than three weeks after her third miscarriage, it takes on an even greater emotional resonance

  6. #6
    come out and level up Waylon's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    This is a beautiful album that has aged really well. That's all I can really think of to say about it!

  7. #7
    whose wheels are squeaking arsonist samael's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    I love love love this album. It really has aged well. I can listen to it any day from start to finish.

  8. #8
    thundering blissful towards death stillorbiting's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    My second album after discovering LE. I went to the record store in 2000, didn't know which one came next in chronological order, and so bought TVAB solely because it had two discs, and I wanted the most music possible. Boy, was I surprised by the drastic change; from LE to TVAB, it's day and night!

    And it meant that the live disc was my very first time hearing Cruel, Waitress, Space Dog, CFG, Sugar, Bells, Girl, Cloud, and Zebra. (Eventually hearing the originals of those later on was pretty shocking too, especially Waitress and Sugar and Bells. Never would've guessed in a thousand years.)

    LE made me like her a lot; TVAB made me into a fan, and the live version of Waitress sealed it for good. That song was what made me know she was someone special whose music was going to be with me for a long time.

    I still love the whole album, both discs, to this day. So, so much. There's not a single song on either disc that I don't love. It's perfect to me. It fights with SW for second place (after FTCH, forever #1 for me) on a weekly basis. As much as I love SW, TVAB has way more nostalgic value. It's been with me almost just as long as LE. Particular standouts (if I had to choose): Bliss, Lust, Suede, Riot Poof, Datura, Spring Haze. Yes, that's half the album. :P I could keep listing.
    Last edited by stillorbiting; 06-18-2010 at 09:12 PM.

  9. #9
    your veil is quietly becoming none roominmyheart's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    I LOVE that version of Juarez. I feel like I keep learning things from this album, as I learn new vocabulary words or read something in Scientific American that relates to the universe and something clicks for me about the term she used in a song. I have to admit though, when I bought it and first listened to it, my response was "what the hell? what is with all this electronic-sounding stuff? why is the piano not the focus? where is my girl from the last 8 years that I have worshipped?" now, I love the album dearly. I would love to hear Riot Poof live.

  10. #10
    Juarez is almost always incredible live. The only arrangement I don't like is the 2007 version. But the '09 one brings back all of the intensity of the '99 performances and uses even creepier synths. Still though, the band arrangement from '99 is my favorite. It just feels so empowering.

  11. #11
    Senior Member
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    Jun 2010
    my college Tori album...damn it's so nostalgic for me. Josephine still hits me where it hurts. and concertina is still one of the best things she has ever done (album version)

  12. #12
    :: dutch oven :: wout's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    behind you!
    My top album is either this or Choirgirl. Which is funny, cause I originally fell for the girl-with-the-piano thing and listening to Venus for the first time was a major WTFHASSHEDONE moment.

  13. #13
    Senior Member aviv amos's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    I respect this album for been edgy, but I'm not a big fan of most of the songs. there isn't even one song that i absolutely love.

    oh, but i do ADORE the live album.

  14. #14
    Loves ponies. Hates phonies. Regina Phalange's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    I remember going to my local college record store the day it came out to buy it and I got a cool poster, which I ended up giving to one of my Tori friends years later. My then boyfriend and I drove around the countryside of valley listening to it. To me, spring haze never sounds so good as on a lonely road, speeding along, going up and down hills, looking at the scenery. I remember I'd read out the flower names in Datura to him and we were dying laughing like we weren't adults, "hehe hee. She said 'clitoral'."

    I really liked the idea of the b-sides being various live recordings that didn't make disk 2. We need more singles and this shows we don't need to have new b-sides. Live tracks work.

    From what I've been able to figure out, other people have worked out where each of the live tracks were recorded except Space Dog and Cornflake Girl. Any guesses here?

    While I like Datura ok, I never loved it the way a lot of people seem to, but I do think she could incorporate parts of it into another song for live performances. the "is there room in my heart" would make a good intro, like she used to do with Hurt or she could do it like how she does RUTH with God.

    I'm really appreciative of the live disk. I didn't really like Sugar or Cornflake Girl, for example, until I got into the live disk, even though I heard those songs live on the 98 tour!

    Since we don't seem to be getting any official live boots from 09, I wish we would get at least a compilatoin like this.

    And as was said above, that Juarez from 99 is so intense. It makes me cry every time I hear it.

    I like 1000 oceans, but to me it started the trend of more adult-contemporary sounding songs we get: Your Cloud, Sleeps with Butterflies. Stuff that isn't necessarily bad, but just seems so incongruous with the first 4 albums.

  15. #15
    'twas mbc 'twas kollins Michael Michael's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
    Where my feets takes me
    In 1998, Boys for Pele made me like her.

    In summer 1999, Choirgirl made me love her. I saw she had an album coming out and asked for it for x-mas.

    On December 25, 1999, Venus made me an obsessive fan. The live album is good, and, despite being too UtP heavy, has a decent variety of songs. But there is some magic in that studio album. It's just such a trip, so effortlessly inventive. Even today, I don't know anything quite like it. My brain says Pele, choirgirl, and scarlet are all better albums, but my heart says Venus will always be #1 with me.

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