Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Song of the Day 11/2: "Extraordinary Machine" - Fiona Apple

The release of Fiona Apple’s third album, Extraordinary Machine, was surrounded by controversy. A first version, produced by Jon Brion, was shoved aside by Epic Records, apparently due to its lack of commercial appeal. As fans launched a campaign supporting Apple, she went to work re-recording the album with a new set of producers, finally releasing the album in 2005, a full six years after When the Pawn… The comparison between the bootleg version of the original album and the official Epic Records release has a lot to say about record labels’ interference in artists’ work. Among the songs that were not tampered with during the re-recording sessions, the title track reveals the strength and progressiveness of the original recordings. “Extraordinary Machine” is a great song, with strong lyrics and vocals emphasized by a quirky, baroque yet uncluttered sound that is lost in the re-recorded set. It will leave you wondering why it is that commerciality so often comes at the expense of originality – and thanking the internet for undermining that tradeoff.

-Melany Barr

1 comment:

  1. I know this post is old as hell, but FYI it was Fiona that didn't like the original versions and asked the record company to give some time and money to re-record them.