Saturday, August 05, 2006

Number 946 - Fiona Apple


Number 946

Fiona Apple


"Criminal"


(1996)

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Genre:Alt Pop
"SHE'S young, talented, beautiful, and, if her handlers have done right by her, she's well on her way to becoming a rock star. No wonder Fiona Apple is so miserable."
"At least that's how she appears. Observe, for example, how Apple stares searchingly from advertisements for her debut album, Tidal: her eyes are sunken, dark-rimmed; her hands clutch at the corners of her open shirt, giving a perception that she's been violated in some unspeakable, albeit very sexy and not altogether involuntary, manner. The image is a shocking and highly inappropriate one, given that Apple was herself a victim of rape at age twelve."
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"Next, listen as Apple rants at the Awards about how "this world [the entertainment industry] is bullshit," prematurely dismissing a generation of potential Fionabes with the admonition "go with yourself." But don't fail to note that her helplessly waifish on-screen image is directly in keeping with the kind of systematic objectification of women for which many critics have indicted . Her clip for "Criminal," for instance, unfolds like outtakes from a porno film, as Apple, clad only in underwear, prowls among a houseful of partied-out teenagers reposing in various stages of undress. Either Apple has indeed been a "bad, bad girl," as her "Criminal" lyrics profess, or she just plays one on TV. As once asked, who's zoomin' who?"
For Aretha Franklin see Number 563
Seems the media and Ms Apple are not on friendly terms. The song, however, is a classic, regardless of the hype and misunderstandings.
What does Rolling Stone think of Fiona Apple
A late-'90s overnight sensation, Fiona Apple was cast as the antidote to packaged pop divettes like Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera. Considering her angst-ridden lyrics and her propensity to shock interviewers, some critics classed her among such provocateurs as Alanis Morissette and Sinéad O'Connor; others, listening to her jazz-tinged, full-throated, accomplished debut, compared her to Laura Nyro and Nina Simone.
Tidal, featuring Apple’s melodically and rhythmically intricate songs, strong piano work, and achingly confessional lyrics, along with Slater’s inventive production work, drew nearly unalloyed raves. Yet Apple was controversial, speaking openly about her rape at age 12 (the basis for the song “Sullen Girl”) and appearing in her underwear for the video for “Criminal” (#21 pop, 1997). The video was interpreted alternately as either self-exploitation or a cryptic denunciation of such exploitation. Accorded Best New Artist in a Video honors at the 1997 MTV Video Awards, Apple, in an obscenity-laced acceptance speech, derided the star-making machinery of show biz and its deleterious effects on adolescents, a maneuver that was mocked by some and praised by others. Musically, with gems like the Modern Rock hit “Shadowboxer” making her case, Apple was unassailable; in media terms, however, she’d become known as a “loose cannon.” [RS from The Rolling Stone Encyclopedia of Rock & Roll (Simon & Schuster, 2001)]
For Alanis Morissette see Number 548
Rolling Stone Top 500 Songs ranked this song at Number (Nope, They hated it) and the Album ranked at Number (Nope, didn't know it was out yet)
This song has a crowbarred rating of 53.6 out of 108
Search Artist here:1-2-3-A-B-C-D-E-F-G-H-I-J-K-L-M-N-O-P-Q-R-S-T-U-V-W-X-Y-Z

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