When The Pawn...
MTV · Nov '99
by Alexandra Flood
Fiona Apple doesn't do anything half way. Consider the title of her sophomore album:
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 the 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. It's a whopper all right, a real doozy of a title that holds nothing back -- and perhaps perfectly fitting for this album from the 98-pound creative heavyweight.
"Limp" isn't limp at all, but a fierce kiss-off in the form of a musical geyser: "It won't be long now until you'll be lying limp in your own hands." "Love Ridden" as you might expect, isn't a happy love song, but it's one of the musically more straightforward on the LP -- Fiona at the piano crooning about a bastard, with orchestral strings backing her up. "Paper Bag" is one of the more curious of the ten tracks. It's surprising as it's a little plucky bit of
Beatles-esque sunshine, until you listen to Apple's words: "I went crazy again today/ Looking for a strand to climb/Looking for a little hope." The single, "Fast As You Can," is a frenetic, percussion laden, pass-at-your-own-risk warning to a prospective lover.