Spin - 1/03, p.71Ranked #15
on Spin's list of 2002's "Albums of the Year"
Spin - 11/02, p.1219 out of 10
- "...An impressionistic travelogue that turns the American landscape into an extension of Amos' own head space...But even when the imagery gets dense, Amos' generous spirit lets you in..."
Uncut - 12/02, p.1384 stars out of 5
- "...One of Amos' most deeply felt, spiritually astute and finest albums..."
CMJ - 11/11/01, p.6
"SCARLET'S WALK stands as a testimony both to Tori Amos' staying power and her continued ability to enrapture listeners while remaining wholeheartedly unique..."
Vibe - 12/02, p.2063 discs out of 5
- "...WALK is a distinctly highbrow work, illuminated by gently swaying rhythms, sublime acoustic guitars, and entrancing melodies..."
The most instantly engaging, least cryptic (though still sometimes inscrutable) Tori Amos record since LITTLE EARTHQUAKES, SCARLET'S WALK is a welcome return to form. Ostensibly a grand concept album based on an American travelogue, the disc is, at its core, simply a collection of detailed relationship songs in the vein of early Joni Mitchell. The instrumentation is sparer than on Amos's last several efforts, effectively showcasing her supple piano work and uncharacteristically unmannered vocal performances. Many tracks feature nothing but bass, drums, piano and atmospheric guitar (courtesy of ex-Pretender Robbie McIntosh and avant garde jazzer David Torn) and this instrumentation gives the record an appropriately open, organic feel.
Though there are, as usual, many moments of confrontational, biting humor here, SCARLET'S WALK reveals a somewhat kinder, gentler Tori Amos. Even "I Can't See New York," which appears to have been inspired by the September 11th attacks, seems more empathetic than angry, and is filled with wistful introspection. Though it lacks anything resembling a hit single, SCARLET'S WALK is a mature and fully realized work, easily ranking among Tori Amos's very best albums.