82862-2 Boys For Pele
Produced by Tori Amos
Released on January 22, 1996
US CHART POSITION #2 . . . PLATINUM RECORD . . . UK CHART POSITION #2
Find it at GEMM
82862-2 cover
[high resolution scan]
 

A harrowing musical journey, but there’s only room for the one rider, Tori Amos. Written from the perspective of the obscure personal, there is no entry point for the listener on Boys For Pele. There are mirages that appear as tantalizing, momentary doors (“Horses,” “Mr.Zebra,” “Agent Orange”), but walk toward them and you’re soon confronted with the same sealed wall. It’s a problem that starts with the title. Boys For Pele might mean any number of interesting things, but here it refers only to past lovers (the Boys) sacrificed for the singer’s benefit (cast here as Pele, the Hawaiian volcano goddess). The primary power of art is as a universal communicator of the personal, and Boys For Pele is a paradox; powerfully rendered but powerless to affect us. Lyrically impenetrable, the effort is still musically rich: “Blood Roses,” “Doughnut Song,” “Talula,” “Caught a Lite Sneeze,” “Professional Widow.” If Tantalus owned an iPod, these would be on it. The first time I heard Boys For Pele, I admit to filing it under B for Bush league. The coos and whispers seemed ill tendered as clumsy coquetry. But after several more sittings, the mental notes I’d made from Boys For Pele were too big to contain in a single subfolder. There’s far too much artistry afoot to call this counterfeit, and much of it unique to Tori Amos. This is fearless music, and though we might fail to peek over her shoulder and glimpse the demon’s she’s fighting, the half of the battle we can see is a vivid spectacle. Pele requires boys and faith. It’s crippled some by jumbled imagery, but in keeping apace you’ll find it breathtaking.

82862-2 back sleeve
82862-2 back sleeve

TRACK LISTING

  1. BEAUTY QUEEN/HORSES    6:07
  2. BLOOD ROSES    3:56
  3. FATHER LUCIFER    3:43
  4. PROFESSIONAL WIDOW    4:31
  5. MR. ZEBRA    1:07
  6. MARIANNE    4:07
  7. CAUGHT A LITE SNEEZE    4:24
  8. MUHAMMAD MY FRIEND    3:48
  9. HEY JUPITER    5:10
  10. WAY DOWN    1:13
  11. LITTLE AMSTERDAM    4:29
  12. TALULA    4:08
  13. NOT THE RED BARON    3:49
  14. AGENT ORANGE    1:26
  15. DOUGHNUT SONG    4:19
  16. IN THE SPRINGTIME OF HIS VOODOO    5:32
  17. PUTTING THE DAMAGE ON    5:08
  18. TWINKLE    3:12
  19. (JPN CD bonus track:) TOODLES MR. JIM

    All songs written by Tori Amos

CREDITS

TORI AMOS -- vocals, Bösendorfer, harpsichord, harmonium organ, clavichord
STEVE CATON -- guitars, swells, mandolin
ALAN FRIEDMAN-- drum programming, effects, organ
MANU KATCHE -- drums
GEORGE PORTER JR. -- bass
Black Dyke Mills Band -- brass
Bull -- Bull (5)
Mino Cinelu -- percussion
Michael Deegan -- bagpipes (16)
Brian Graber -- flugelhorn (12)
Tracy Griffin -- flugelhorn (12)
Calrence J. Johnson III -- soprano sax, tenor sax
Craig Klein -- sousaphone (12)
Darry Lewis, Mark Sterling, Marvin Sterling, Sam Berfect, Jack Trimple, jmes Crawford Jr., Gud McField Jr. -- gospel choir (10)
Mark Mullins -- trombone and horn arrangement (12)
Bernard Quinn -- bagpipes (16)
R.O.B. -- Dutch pilot (13)
Nancy Shanks (Beenie) -- additional vocals (16)
John Philip Shenale -- string arrangement (6)
The Sinfonia of London -- strings (6)
Scott Smalley -- orchestrator and conductor (6)
Marcel van Limbeek -- Delgany church bells, Dutch pilot, engineer, mixing
James Watson -- trumpet, conductor
Peter Willison -- musical director (6)
Mark Hawley -- engineer, mixing
Bob Clearmountain -- mixing
Cindy Palmano -- photography, art direction
Walter and Victor -- art direction
Paddy Cramsie (Kono Design) and Paul Chessell (East West) -- graphic design

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
US January 22, 1996 Atlantic 2LP/CD/CS 82862-1/2/4 clear vinyl, lyric insert
UK January 22, 1996 EastWest 2LP/CD/CS 82862-1/2/4 clear vinyl, lyric insert
JPN 1996 EastWest CDX AMCE-918 w. bonus track

 

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