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31 of 35 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Music for when the warm gets dark, and the light gets cold...
I'll start by saying that I'm one of those people that thinks "Little Earthquakes", "Under The Pink" and "Boys For Pele" (her first three albums) are Tori's best albums. Even though the albums released after them are all beautiful in their own way, I don't believe any of them had the same level of passion, intensity, and beauty of those first three albums...
Published on 24 Sept. 2011 by C. MCCLELLAND

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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ambitious, some great highlights, but doesn't always hit the mark
I seem to be in the minority here. I was really looking forward to a classically inspired release from Tori Amos, but while you can't argue with the ambition behind this album, like her last few it is a bit of a mixed bag.
On the plus side, Tori's wonderful piano playing, which seemed in the background on her last album, is back to the fore. I also think her voice...
Published on 22 Sept. 2011 by AliceChildress


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18 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Dream-weaver has Regained her Powers, 19 Sept. 2011
By 
Mr. D. R. Wall "Liminal" (Bristol) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Night of Hunters (Audio CD)
Tori has run the gamut of possible roles she can play, with limited success in the last few years. Her stints as rock chick (American Doll Posse), lead songwriter in a band (Abnormally Attracted to Sin) and kooky song revisionist (Strange Little Girls, Midwinter Graces) just didn't suit her all that well. But like a girl who thinks the dress looks great then changes her mind when she gets it home, it looks like Tori's quietly figured out where she was going wrong and taken some hints from the mediocre reviews for those albums. I am relieved to find she's finally back to what she does best - piano-led and unconventionally structured pieces with mostly classical instrumentation, which change tones and time signatures as they go stalking, waltzing and flying through a fairytale with a dark side. The classical themes of these songs take me right back to the world of Peter and the Wolf, the Carnival of the Animals and other classical records I used to love as a kid, but you don't need to know too much about classical music to sense the rich colours coming through this window onto Western musical history. For lifelong Tori fans, the string arrangements recall some of her earliest songs like 'Flying Dutchman', then the nine-minute 'Star Whisperer' and the lilting last song 'Carry' are nearer to 'Yes Anastasia' from Under The Pink. Having the classical themes coming through on the full range of wind instruments and some well-worked cello is the cherry on this very elaborate cake. The oboe is a particularly evocative instrument, conjuring up winter woodland scenes and the wilds of Ireland, and it trips lightly and stealthily behind the piano as Tori (playing herself on this album according to the lyric sheets) catches glimpses of a pixie-like character called Annabelle. The unexpected introduction of new girl Natashya Hawley to sing these parts may jolt you early on in 'Snowblind', but by 'Night of Hunters' it's all making that Tori type of sense. Her dense mythical symbolism of watchers, dream-keepers, sailors and shamanism ('Cactus Practice') reminds me of Yeats's poetry more than anything, and surely an avid reader like Tori didn't set off without him on this foray into the mythical past of Ireland. With so much going on it seems about to collapse under its own weight in the opening half a dozen songs; the veering back and forth between discordant stalking bass piano riffs and soaring high-octave Tori choruses sometimes threatens to bring on a sort of musical seasickness. But this time Tori manages to keep the album on course and she has made what may become known as her best album since Little Earthquakes.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Don't be scared of the hunters, 13 July 2015
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This review is from: Night of Hunters (Audio CD)
If you are even slightly a fan of this artist, you must have this album.
It might be her best work.
It is so well produced that the only word I can use is stunning.
So good I played it again after the first listen because I couldn't quite believe what I had just heard.
I'm really sorry I shied away from this album for so long.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An enchanting struggle, 4 Oct. 2011
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This review is from: Night of Hunters (Deluxe Edition) (Audio CD)
At times intricately beautiful, sometimes rather musical theatre, musically beautiful throughout...... I've listened through several times and whilst to begin with I felt it important to listen from beginning to end - I now pick out my favourite tracks and skip those I find less effective. I don't care for the tale that might be told here, that is just my personal response. I prefer to listen and make my own stories.....

I find some of the lyrics fascinating - and some other songs just don't do it for me. An example of a song that I feel might work well in a musical theatre production is 'Edge of the Moon' - which to me could slot right into Les Mis or Chess! Yikes..... is that a good thing? Perhaps.

Night of Hunters has a beautifully produced feel, and the piano is the best I have heard from Tori. I would like to listen to an instrumental version, it would make for a very enjoyable listen I am sure. I am thinking of the composer/artist Hauschka - who knows how to put really interesting sounds and arrangements together. Can he do a remix for you Tori?

My favourite track is Seven Sisters. The wind instrument and piano and production on that is just lovely....

I enjoy ambiguity and a little rage now and then - perhaps that rocky edge is not for this album and I miss it. Tori's voice is a little 'nice' throughout this.... Her daughter's voice lends an earthy, fascinating contrast and I like it very much.

Mixed feelings then. But this is a fine album to listen to - I hesitate to say tackle - grapple with.....
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Potentially great, practically not-so-good, 25 Sept. 2011
By 
This review is from: Night of Hunters (Deluxe Edition) (Audio CD)
Fan since 1996. Funny how one feels the need to justify himself before saying (spoiler) something negative on Tori Amos' latest output. I won't go into the whole quaqmire of how she lost it after she got herself a family etc etc which you can read all over the place. I did, however, sell all the albums she brought out after Scarlet's Walk, keeping Midwinter Graces, which has some gems in it.
To those unsure of this latest effort, I will say the quality is superb, the classically-inspired music and piano playing beautiful, vocals (Amos') great. But while having her daughter sing on her seasonal album worked in that context, I'm not convinced by her more extensive presence in this work. I don't care that Miss Hawley's meant to embody some wise, shapeshifting spirit from a time when the Goddess ruled, an 11-year old singing about "grid(s) of disempowerment" and "harmonic defiance" just seems jarring. The lyrics are the weakest point of the album, I believe. Amos has always had a tendency to ramble, as interviews show, but lately that has treacled down in her lyrics. Too ornate, too many big words, and really there is no need to prove you have swallowed a dictionary to get a point across. Simplicity, if anything, does the job. Good old Alanis Morissette has been speeding down that road for some time now, alienating people by the thousands without producing a single memorable song.
So perhaps next time Amos will give us an album of few, gorgeous simple songs instead of another essay in Celtic mythology and femininity. I certainly hope so.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Nice music without the singing, 24 Jan. 2013
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This review is from: Night of Hunters (Audio CD)
It comes as no surprise to me that Tori has released a version of this album which is just instrumental. I don't understand the rave reviews for this album - apart from a couple of tracks I couldn't say that I like it - and I tried, come to think of it I have been trying with Tori for a few years now. Probably Scarlet's Walk was the last album that was really any good. But never mind, there are always elements of greatness - these definitely do not include her daughter's singing as far as I am concerned. So back to the singing - it just doesn't work. Tori has in the past constructed the music to fit her lyrics and turning this on its head is just a bad idea. It feels uncomfortable, clunky and contrived.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tori Goes Deutsche, 1 Oct. 2011
By 
The Wolf (uk) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Night of Hunters (Deluxe Edition) (Audio CD)
An album for the historic Deutsche Grammophon label is a very
interesting sidestep for Tori Amos. I grew up surrounded by my
Father's and my own collection of DG recordings of the great
nineteenth century classical romantic repertoire; the iconic
black and yellow logo never far from the turntable. Beethoven; Brahms;
Bruckner; Mahler; Schumann; Schubert. In some ways Ms Amos has
turned her attention to the latter in taking on the compositional
form of a song cycle who's nuances and shadows in some way reflect
Schubert's incomparable exercises in the genre : 'Die Schone
Mullerin' (D 795); 'Winterreise' (D 911) and the sublime
'Schwanengesang' (D 957), published after his death in 1828.

A narrative spanning fourteen inventions, 'Night Of Hunters', employs
voice, piano and a small instrumental ensemble to tell the tale of one
woman's internal journey from darkness into light. (Her spirit guide,
Annabelle, is hauntingly realised by her daughter Natashya).
The notion of rebirth and reinvention has never been far away from
Ms Amos' modus operandi, so the subject provides a fitting platform for
the further development of her compositional and lyrical preoccupations.

Despite its lofty ambitions the project is both easy to approach and
enjoyable. It will not disappoint her many fans and will doubtless
win her new friends who possess a bold sense of enquiry and adventure.

Ms Amos sings and plays beautifully throughout. Her beloved Bosendorfer
has never sounded more at home and the crack instrumentalists at her
disposal discharge their duties consummately. A wonderful career highlight!

Essential.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Love Tori Amos and her talent, 7 Jun. 2015
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Love Tori Amos and her talent. Unlikely we'll see anything like 'Little Earthquakes" or "Under the Pink" again though with their individual stand-out songs.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Buzz-worthy, 25 Sept. 2011
By 
L. Ferreira - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Night of Hunters (Deluxe Edition) (Audio CD)
I believe that Night of Hunters is many things, it's conceptual, it's beautiful and also dark in many places. It's also part classical, but re-told by the mistress of alternative-rock. Tori Amos has placed her signature to the originals done by the classical masters and has made them, well, accessible to the pop-rock music realm.

Through intelligent use of piano-and-strings and poetry she weaves a tale that I am not afraid to get lost in. The music is lush and her vocals are good, albeit a little weathered from all the years of mesmerising live performances.

"Shattering Sea" is a good opener, because I imagine it to be the sort of dark and dramatic song you could almost hear on any of her previous albums.

"SnowBlind", sounds like something from Tori's sophomore album, "Under The Pink", and this duet with her daughter, Tash, is spell-binding in the sense that, if you listen to their dialogue carefully it transports you 3000 years into the pagan past of Ireland, in the throws of the anchient rite of the poet and their Battle of Trees; the quirkiest of all the tracks.

"Battle of Trees" would've been one of the best tracks if it weren't for Tori's meticulous attention to detail and plot, here, trying to explain the mythical language of poets as well as the main story arc of a previous life with her lover caught in a time where Paganism was slowly losing the war to Christianity.

"Fearlessness" is my favourite track. The chorus is superb, and just before it's sung again before the song's beautiful climax, the instrumental builds and builds, leaving me with goosebumps on most listens.

The other duets with her daughter, "Cactus Practice" and "Job's Coffin" aren't as compelling as "SnowBlind" or the foreboding "The Chase" but I still commend Tash's vocal ability.

"Star Whisperer" and "Edge of The Moon" are both very dark songs that both share something in common, they start off as quite standard classic tracks but magically transform midway into a signature piano piece, just like many of her other great songs (think "Mother", "Icicle" and "Yes Anastasia"). "Nautical Twilight" makes for some easy and beautiful listening, especially in the astounding vocal of the chorus, "She is boundless".

Musical influences abound, most poignantly and delicately in "Your Ghost", a ballad to the man she is hoping to reclaim back into her life.

On the title track she duets with Kelsey Dobbins, her vocally trained and gifted niece, they sound almost hymnal as they both sing the universal tale of light and darkness, and the creatures that exist within her world and her own soul.

The instrumental mastery (thanks to the Berlin Philharmonic clarinet soloist Andreas Ottensamer) of the penultimate track, "Seven Sisters" transports the listener back into the present, where after Tori's journery of self-discovery, leads us to another touching and somewhat sentimental ballad, "Carry". It's only sort of a fairytale, like Tori had sung before, she does not make it clear if there's a happy ending or not...

Credit must be given to John Philip Shenale, who arranges the strings so effortlessly as well as the The Apollon Musagete Quartet who sound like they have been playing with Tori all their lives.

This album requires dedication and is for serious music lovers who can't resist a carefully crafted narrative.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Tori amos with a string quartet., 13 Nov. 2013
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This review is from: Night of Hunters (Deluxe Edition) (Audio CD)
This is a great album i throughly reccommend it. Tori is acompanied by a string quartet fos a slightly different sound. Excellent album.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very different and great album, 26 Oct. 2013
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This review is from: Night of Hunters (Audio CD)
I suppose you need to appreciate this artist to enjoy this album, I love it but my wife hates it. Give it a chance and it will grow on you
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