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4.3 out of 5 stars
53
4.3 out of 5 stars
The Beekeeper
Format: Audio CD|Change
Price:£5.99+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime


TOP 500 REVIEWERon 16 January 2016
key tracks..
sleeps with butterflies
martha's foolish ginger
the power of orange knickers
cars and guitars

when the beekeeper, tori's 9th album bulldozed its way into the uk top 20, i was elated. being a fan i was overjoyed at her commercial success. not that this matters to ms amos, but i was pleased that more people out there would discover her music...

although all or tori's albums are great pieces of work, for me the beekeeper is her best album since little earthquakes. at 19 songs long, you will be forgiven for thinking its going to be a drawn out affair, like boys for pele seemed, but the album flies by in style. 'parasol' is a great opener, followed by the r 'n' b tinged 'sweet the sting'. then comes the awesome duet with damien rice on the strangely titled 'the power of orange knickers'...a song that sounds like its going to be appaling, but instead gets into your head and stays there.

'cars and guitars' is another highlight, as tori uses metaphors from ahem..cars and guitars..to talk about sexually intimacy. my favourite tracks are 'sleeps with butterflies' and 'martha's foolish ginger' both of which showcase tori's remarkable vocal ability, on beautiful and poignant songs, which while still being true to her integrity, are accessible radio friendly love songs.

this album is strong enough to keep the fans happy, and to introduce new fans to an artist thats always been about the music
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on 23 April 2016
Some fantastic stuff here, only beaten by Under the Pink in Tori album ranking order.

Highlights are "Toast" which is just one of Tori's most haunting tracks and the title track which is just sublime in its weirdness and melancholy.

There are 19 tracks so it's huge value though some of them are a bit hmm like The Power of Orange Knickers and Hoochie Woman.
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on 26 April 2017
Already had this album before, but it is by far my favourite album of my favourite musican tori Amos and seen her live when she was promoting this album glad I've got the original now and a great price.
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on 20 August 2017
Bought as a gift, the recipient was delighted.
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on 10 October 2017
not her best
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on 1 June 2017
Wonderful
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on 20 September 2016
An absolutely stunning album! I became a huge fan of Tori Amos back in the 90s, but then pretty much stopped following her out of fear that she could never top the magnificence of "Boys for Pele." I recently came back to her and have been rewarded with this gem.

At first listen "The Beekeeper" seems almost incoherent in its grandness, but after repeated run-throughs themes begin to emerge, and taken as a whole it tells a story of sorts. The album is framed by songs that reference frames and art, while also capturing the movement of the lyrical "I" from bitter and self-absorbed to accepting and forgiving, even as she confronts loss and mortality. In "Parasol," the opening track, the lyrical "I" sees herself as someone captured--trapped--within a work of art, who seeks to deal with betrayal. The next several tracks, including the marvelous "Jamaica Inn," in which boats and water, another major theme in this album, appear, deal with the betrayal of a lover, something that comes back in later tracks, especially "Hoochie Woman," in which our narrator sheds her bitterness in favor of humor and an I'm-in-charge attitude.

A shift happens with "Barons of Suburbia," in which Amos's lyrical "I" confronts a deeper loss than merely infidelity, and also the strength to rise above it. In "Ribbons Undone" a daughter-like character is introduced, and the album's "narrator" finds herself turning from contemplating herself to connecting joyfully with another, even as the constant theme of loss hovers over the song: the girl in the song doesn't want to grow up, but we know that she will. Time reappears in the haunting title track, as the lyrical "I" wonders how she will deal with the death of a loved one, even as she tries to accept that it will happen, that the Beekeeper comes for us all when it is our time. The album ends with "Toast," full of references not only to time, but to Easter, rising, and art. It returns us to the idea of someone being captured in art, but this time it is not the lyrical "I" who is trapped there, but her addressee who, having been let go, is preserved in a carving, thus avoiding being lost forever. Even though the overall mood of the album is in many ways dark, notwithstanding the bright piano and Amos's soaring vocals, the movement from the first to the last song is one of expansion, rising, and forgiveness. A truly tour de force effort that every Tori Amos fan should listen to.
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on 11 April 2007
Tori Amos was one of the most successful and significant singer-songwriters of the 1990s, and perhaps the finest female singer-songwriter since Joni Mitchell. However, her early albums, which were semi-confessional, bloodletting, emotional epics of intense drama have tended to cast her eternally as angst-ridden or fiery. Which makes subtle works like 2002's Scarlet's Walk and 2005's The Beekeeper appear less mesmeric at first, and also tends to see them wrongfully maligned.

Scarlet's Walk is perhaps Amos' songwriting masterpiece, a work of insight and spot-on poetry evoking American history and politics, with a smooth, '70s road-trip style soundtrack to match. The Beekeeper is its more sensual, sexy, and diverse sister, finding Amos in a slower, groovier mood than ever before. The histrionics and dark, semi-gothic epics are replaced in favour of songs positively dripping in sensuality and subtlety.

Melodically, it is one of Amos' strongest works, especially on such minor verse/major chorus delights as "Parasol," the soft, girlish "Martha's Foolish Ginger," and the delicately feminine "Jamaica Inn." A hallmark of this album is soft, tinkly piano melodies, intricately-woven high-pitched backing vocals, and more conventional song structures than before. Compared to her previous records, the production style - with vocals upfront, and subtle arrangements - is inviting but not necessarily as adventurous; still, when Tori Amos does "conventional," it's not quite conventional like other artists.

Elsewhere, she indulges a more diverse side than Scarlet's Walk displayed. "Sweet the Sting" is sexy Latin funk a la Santana, the "sha-na-na" oddity of "Ireland" has a strange reggae undercurrent, "Witness" is a cascading homage to '70s R&B/neo-funk with a surprising piano break, and "Mother Revolution" retains a jazzy rhythm without introducing traditionally jazz instruments. Only the urgently beautiful "Marys of the Sea" and the fierce if strained "Barons of Suburbia" recall her mid-'90s 'freakouts,' but there are two solo piano beauties as well - the closing "Toast," an ode to her recently-departed brother, and the show-stopping "Original Sinsuality," despite its pun-laden lyrics a spellbinding gem featuring one of her career-best codas.

Vocally, Amos is not in her ultimate best form but still manages well with the material. At times, her high-end vocal range sounds a little forced, but these songs have a soft femininity to which the vocal style suits. Amos herself described the album, which is wildly varied thematically (although she attempted to construct a concept based around the Gnostic gospels that restored Mary Magdalene), as "a perfume that wraps around you," and sonically that is very true.

The Beekeeper has been dismissed by many as too soft, too long, and not cohesive enough. True, some editing could have been advisable but this is a new subtle perspective to Amos' work and a welcome addition to her canon, which of course will be ever-growing in the years to come. It's not quite as intricate or complex as before, and the lyrics are far from her best, but it's by no means a poor or average album and even when Amos veers close to the mainstream, there's enough uniqueness and originality to remind us that she is in fact a world-class songwriter and a modern-day treasure.
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on 2 August 2007
I've owned this album for a whole two days as I write this, and can already say with full confidence it will be a cherished album on my shelf, played often until it is scratched and worn out. This is the type of CD you fight over when going through a break-up. Although it is not as instantly striking as Scarlet's Walk, is an album full of songs that mix well together, but would equally do well as stand alone singles. Below are a few songs I think really stand out.

1. Parasol: This is a lovely sweet song, a perfect opener. I think it sets the tone of the album perfectly.
2. Sweet the Sting: Reminds me of a relationship. The type you know isn't right for you, but still feels good
3. The Power of Orange Knickers: When I first heard this, I didn't like it. However after a few plays I have begun to hear how well matched Tori and Damien's voices are on this lovely little song.
4. Jamaica Inn: I adore this song. I think it is so uplifting, and the music is incredibly unique.
6. Sleeps with Butterflies: Another favourite of mine. I think this song describes being in love perfectly. The real type of love where trust begins to kick in.
8. Mother Revolution: An wonderfully bitter sweet song that sounds like it belongs to Scarlet's Walk.
13. Ireland: A wonderful cheerful little song, with obviously Irish sounds to accompany it.
14. The Beekeeper: My absolute favourite from the album. I can't really put my finger on why, but I just think it's super.
17. Goodbye Pisces: A song which describe perfectly the feelings you shouldn't feel, but do, after a particularly sad break-up.
19. Toast: A beautiful song. Leaves you feeling slightly sad, yet also slightly happy at the same time. Incredibly touching.
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on 26 July 2005
I feel compelled to write a review of this album. I am a huge fan of Tori Amos, and when I bought this album I thought 'what the hell have you done, Tori?'. In short, i detested it, and only through forcing myself to listen to it literally non-stop after buying it, did I grow to realise how beautiful some of the album actually is.
Ireland and Cars and Guitars are unforgivable, and I still can't listen to them all the way through, accepting that there are now two Tori songs that I dislike! However, Mother Revolution, Original Sinsuality, The Power Of Orange Knickers and Marys Of The Sea make up for these duds, and there really is a lot here to sift through and love. The main problem here is the quantity of what she has recorded. If it were cut by about five songs, it really could have been up there with Pele and Choirgirl as the best of her career. Sadly, it's not, but it's a good album that shows she still has huge originality and skill.
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