On the eve of the release of her first album in seven years, singer Fiona Apple announced today another leg of her tour that includes a stop in New Orleans. She'll be playing the House of Blues on Monday, Sept. 24. Tickets go on sale this Friday, June 22, at 10 a.m.
Her much-anticipated album The Idler Wheel Is Wiser Than the Driver of the Screw and Whipping Cords Will Serve You More Than Ropes Will Ever Do — which is lengthy, but not as long as the 90-word title of her 1999 album When the Pawn ... — comes out tomorrow, but already it's garnered positive reviews. NPR had the album streaming on its website for the First Listen series last week, and before that Apple released three of the album's tracks. Below is the video for the single "Every Single Night." The song details the torment and insomnia wrought by a creative mind, and it's accurately rendered in Joseph Cahill's video that plays out like a rapid series of feverish dreams.
The entirely acoustic The Idler Wheel ... is not very accessible at times, but it's probably Apple's best work to date. Its songs are visceral and raw, with Apple practically screaming at some parts. The album also has some of Apple's best lyrics; the prevailing theme of them seems to be Apple's desire for closeness and loving relationships that battles an equal desire for solitude. In one song she says “How can I ask anyone to love me / When all I do is beg to be left alone?”
That persona in her music matches the public persona of the Fiona Apple of recent interviews. In interviews with Spin, Pitchfork and Vulture to promote the album release, she talks about how she rarely leaves the house and has relatively few friends. She says that although she doesn't want kids, she reads parenting books to help her with "self-parenting." She also discusses the genesis of the poem she wrote for the album title.
The more than 50-date tour seems daunting for an artist who in the past has suffered from stage fright and has had an infamous onstage meltdown. Let's just hope she has the emotional wherewithal to get through her New Orleans gig.