Locked down at home on the Southwest coast of England was a new source of inspiration and reflection for Tori Amos’ 16th album Ocean To Ocean (Decca Records), out Oct. 29.
Pieced together between March and summer of 2021, Ocean to Ocean is Amos’ first album since her 2017 release Native Invader, and crosses the dark and lighter elements of family and separation, of loss and renewed life, treading the waters from the West Coast of America to the Cornish coast.
Dividing her life between Cornwall, Florida, and being on the road, Amos processed the troubling times, including the political upheaval over the past year, and dislocation, by traveling… in her imagination.
“I would travel just to have new experiences,” says Amos. “I had to find a chair instead, and travel like I did when I was five, in my head.”
Ocean to Ocean is about losses and coping with them, says Amos. “Thankfully when you’ve lived long enough, you can recognize you’re not feeling like the mom you want to be, the wife you want to be, the artist you want to be,” she says. “I realized that to shift this, you have to write from the place where you are. I was in my own private hell, so I told myself, then that’s where you write from… you’ve done it before.”
Amos adds, “We have all had moments that can knock us down. This record sits with you where you are, especially if you are in a place of loss. I am fascinated when someone has gone through a tragedy, and how they work through their grief. That is where the gold is. When somebody is actually at that place, thinking ‘I’m done,’ how do you reach that person? Sometimes it’s not about a pill or a double shot of tequila. It’s about sitting in the muck together. I’m going to meet you in the muck.”