Tori Amos Delivers First Glimpse of Native Invader with “Cloud Riders”

Prolific singer-songwriter Tori Amos recently surprised fans by releasing “Cloud Riders,” the first taste of her upcoming album, Native Invader. The introspective new single ponders a turbulent relationship and decrees her unbendable desire to survive its storminess.

Amos previously revealed the future-facing theme of the new album by saying:

“The songs on Native Invader are being pushed by the Muses to find different ways of facing unforeseen challenges and in some cases dangerous conflicts. The record looks to Nature and how, through resilience, she heals herself. The songs also wrestle with the question: what is our part in the destruction of our land, as well as ourselves, and in our relationships with each other?”

The lyrics of “Cloud Riders” seem to fulfill Amos’ cryptic promise of Native Invader’s subject matter as she sings:

“Standing on the edge of a cliff/ Didn’t think it would come to this/ A dead calm before the storm/ Not a sound from their engines/ From the other side, saw a shooting star at 4:22 AM.”

And in the line: “Underneath the stars above/I said, ‘No, stop, I am not giving up on us/And I am not going anywhere soon,” Amos sounds more than ready to stand her ground.

Upon initial listening, the lyrics and melody of “Riders” conspicuously harken back to Amos’ Scarlet’s Walk era. In fact, it would easily sound at home on the 2002 set, comfortably nestled between “A Sorta Fairytale” and “Strange.” [Read Full Review]

40 Years of Love: Donna Summer and the Derivation of Electronica

It’s been 40 years since the world first heard the future of music when “I Feel Love” by Donna Summer shocked us into a new sonic awakening. The electronic masterpiece – composed by Summer along with Giorgio Moroder and Pete Bellotte – was the foundation for what was to become known as electronic dance music. Whether you loved or loathed disco, “I Feel Love” commanded everyone’s attention and became a dance floor anthem during the summer of 1977. At the time, no one had previously heard anything like it. It’s hypnotic melody, combined with an irresistible synthesized bassline and pulsating dance beat was musical nirvana. Summer’s sensual vocal delivery was the icing on top of the cake as she perfectly conveyed the euphoric essence of the song’s timeless and universal message of love. The first lady of love had struck gold (and platinum) again and delivered another game-changing record every bit as earth-shattering as her breakthrough hit, “Love to Love You Baby.” [Read Full Review]

Vinyl Rewind Redux

As subscribers of my music blog may remember, I featured Vinyl Rewind in a Q&A piece a couple of years ago. However, with the continued resurgence of vinyl, I recently reached out to the Vinyl Geek for a second time and again he was gracious enough to answer a few additional questions.

With the contemporary renaissance of vinyl record collecting, now is the perfect time to dive into Vinyl Rewind. Not only has renewed interest in the vinyl record format become more popular since the 1980s, but interest has also made the internet ubiquitous with numerous music blogs and websites discussing the enduring format. Among the most noteworthy and enjoyable I’ve found is Vinyl Rewind, which is hosted by wax enthusiast Eric Callero, aka the Vinyl Geek.

The Vinyl Geek shares his insight of his latest groove-a-licious finds in an extremely entertaining and informative style. I always learn fascinating tidbits about albums I’ve enjoyed for years (most notably, his in-depth analysis of The Beatles and Prince’s Sign o’ the Times double albums), as well as find new items to add to my wish list each time he uploads a new video. So, if you treasure collecting favorite old and new albums on this long beloved format as much as I do, then I highly recommend checking out the Vinyl Rewind website and subscribing to the Vinyl Geek’s YouTube channel.

After habitually visiting his YouTube channel for longer than I can now recall, I’d amassed a handful of questions which the Vinyl Geek was kind enough to take the time to answer for me. His insights were both interesting and beneficial, so I thought I’d share his responses with fellow crate diggers who not only appreciate vinyl, but are always seeking a gratifyingly successful new haul. [Click here to read my Q&A with the Vinyl Geek]