New Fiona Apple is very good25 June 2012
Last week Fiona Apple released an album. She has, apparently, been working on it quite secretly for years. That duration might have been just to come up with the title, The Idler Wheel Is Wiser than the Driver of the Screw and Whipping Cords Will Serve You More than Ropes Will Ever Do.
But perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised; this is the same artist who had an album called When the Pawn Hits the Conflicts He Thinks Like a King What He Knows Throws the Blows When He Goes to the Fight and He’ll Win the Whole Thing ‘Fore He Enters the Ring There’s No Body to Batter When Your Mind Is Your Might So When You Go Solo, You Hold Your Own Hand and Remember That Depth Is the Greatest of Heights and if You Know Where You Stand, Then You Know Where to Land and if You Fall It Won’t Matter, ‘Cuz You’ll Know That You’re Right.
The Idler Wheel… has been very-well reviewed by critics and fans. It’s certainly my favourite Fiona Apple album to date. It reminds me a lot of PJ Harvey’s last release, the fantastic Let England Shake. It’s stripped and raw and emotional. It hurts to listen to some of it. There’s nothing pop-sounding here. “Periphery”, “Regret” and “Hot Knife” each almost knocked me over. Apple has tapped into something gutsy and primal. It’s not over-artsy. It’s closely connected to hurt, and sounds really genuine.