Concert: Tori Amos and Ben Folds in Minneapolis

Artist: Tori Amos

Date: August 9, 2003

Opening Act: Ben Folds

Venue: Northrop Auditorium

City: Minneapolis, MN

Review by [Amy Lotsberg] Producer of Collected Sounds

First of all, I know this is a women in music site. But Ben is one of my favorite performers. He is totally geeky cute, had an amazing voice and bangs out gorgeous songs. If only I could play like that! He was wonderful. If you have a chance to see him live don’t miss it.

Tori Tori tori…

Now I’ve been a huge fan of Tori’s for years. She’s part of the reason I built this site. She helped shape my musical life from the beginning of her career. I love her, always have, always will. But man, has she gotten weird. Even for me. That’s saying something. I like weird. She has always had her “own way” of speaking/singing. But it has elevated into just plain old coming up with new ways to pronounce words so that no one can understand her. If you don’t already have the lyrics memorized forget trying to figure out what the hell she’s saying. Star Fucker became “steee-ir fickah”. I was talking about this with an email friend and she said that when she heard a live version of one of Tori’s songs where she says that someone is “additcted to nicotine patches” it sounded like “she’s a deekted. ta niggedy peechies.” I rest my case!

I understand that part of the problem was the shitty mix. This time the bass and drums were up so high I cold scarcely make out her piano (except when she was playing alone) and her voice was loud enough most of the time but muddy as hell. All distortion. There were also TONS of effects on her voice. I can understand putting effects on the voice of (insert the name of your favorite non-talented teen pop star) but Tori? She doesn’t need it. It’s distracting. I don’t like it.

There was a young mother and her small child (maybe 8 years old) sitting next to me and I was embarrassed for the mom. Now Tori has always liked to simulate sex on her piano bench but she has upped the ante with giving blowjobs to the microphones as well. I don’t think there is a sharp edge on any of her equipment anymore. I felt like I shouldn’t be watching.

Tori was Tori…plus. And Ben was just simply fabulous as always. I’d never realized how much both of them like to us the “F” word. Not that I mind, I’m quite fond of that word myself. But it occurred to me that instead of calling this show “A lotta pianos” they could have called it “A Lotta Effenheimers”

All in all this was a great show. But I’d go see Ben Folds again in a heart beat…Tori maybe.

Set list

Ben Folds Set List:
One Angry Dwarf and 200 Solemn Faces
Zak and Sara
(unknown song–lyrics included, “Never been so strange”)
Give Judy My Notice
(new unknown song–lyrics included”…these people in hiding restaurant”)
Chopsticks (Liz Phair cover)
The Luckiest
Rock this Bitch (in ragtime)
Rockin the suburbs (Ben said this song was inspired by a comment the band Korn made about Ben’s music in Spin magazine. They said they didn’t like it because it “sounds like Cheers”. To which Ben responded, “I like ‘Cheers'”)
Not the Same (Ben said this song is about a guy who climbed up a tree when on acid and came down a Born again Christian)
(I can’t recall the name of the last songs but he has us all singing in 3 part harmony kept making us do it again and again. Juped on top of the piano and led us like a conductor, very cool.)

Tori Amos Set List
Wampum Prayer
A Sorta fairytale
Little Earthquakes
Father Lucifer
“the Dunn Bros song” (this is probably not what it’s called but she was singing about a previous trip to Minneapolis when it was super cold out. She had just had a fight with her then boyfriend (now hubby) and went to get coffee at Dunn Brothers)
Cornflake Girl
Black-Dove (January)

(Band Leaves)
Let It Be
Sister Janet

(Band returns)
Putting The Damage On
Professional Widow
I Can’t See New York
Precious Things

(1st Encore)
Liquid Diamonds

(2nd Encore)
Sweet Sangria
Purple Rain

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