Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Perfect Songs Series: Tori Amos, Cloud on My Tongue

It isn't the first song that comes to mind when we think "Tori Amos," I know - but, I always felt that this little gem was way over-looked. The first thing that made me take notice was an otherwise diatonic progression but then the subtle introduction of the flatted sixth in the piano gives the accompaniment a pathetic/futile feeling in the most beautiful way. It is also characteristic of Ms. Amos that there can be genuine texture to the song, there doesn't always have to be bass, there doesn't always have to be complete chords - which means that when they appear it is all the more satisfying. The balance of bowed strings versus percussive piano is also something that mirrors the gracefulness of a ballerina on a tightrope. Finally, the climactic section of the song in the last 30 seconds being in such a low tessitura is something with which songwriters should take note.

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