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More powerful than ever

Tori Amos
Riverside Theatre
Milwaukee, WI
Nov. 4, 2007
Tori Amos Tori Amos

Story and photos by Matt Schwenke

With her 2007 release American Doll Posse boasting 23 tracks, Tori Amos had plenty of new material to choose from during her performance at the Riverside Theatre, but the show mainly concentrated on her earliest work. While her new album takes a multiple-personality sort of approach, Amos' set was full of the harrowing vocals, pulsing keys and hip-grinding she's known for.

The performance began amidst impressive lights and with the new "Bouncing Off Clouds," before delving into the title track and b-side "Upside Down" from the 1992 debut release Little Earthquakes. A return to the new material with "Beauty of Speed" stirred up the crowd with its tribal-like rhythm, while "Roosterspur Bridge" was a smoky lullaby. Dashing off stage to trade her relatively modest outfit in for a sparkly pink one-piece suit, Amos was most electrifying in the rollicking "Big Wheel," that featured Amos' dirty dancing over a deep southern rock sound. "Pancake," from the 2002 release Scarlet's Walk, put Amos' incredible vocal range on full display, as well as her sexual stage antics that included a crotch grab for good measure. From the same album, Amos proved to be quite the entertainer as a version of "Strange" went awry, and instead of starting the song over, Amos turned the mistake into an improv ditty about how she "fucked this up so bad" and received a standing ovation from many in the crowd. Ending the set with the beautifully dark "Code Red," there was no mistake in Amos' new, powerful rock sound.

Returning for an encore, Amos reached back to her debut album for the quickly-changing "Precious Things" and the flat out rock of "Tear In Your Hands," which, when paired with the new material, brings Amos back around full circle and more powerful than ever.

Milwaukee Set list:
Bouncing Off Clouds
Little Earthquakes
Upside Down
Beauty of Speed
Roosterspur Bridge
Professional Widow

Big Wheel
Cornflake Girl
Tori Amos Tori Amos Tori Amos

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