Natalie Merchant — Thick As Thieves
Album: Ophelia
Avg rating:
6.6

Your rating:
Total ratings: 746
Ratings histogram:
Released: 1998
Length: 6:40
Plays (last 30 days): 1
Remember how it all began
the apple and the fall of man
the price we pay
so the people say

Down the path of shame it led us
dare to bite the hand that fed us
fairy tale the moral end
wheel of fortune never turns again

Never turns again

The worst of it is come and gone in the chaos of millennium
in the falling out of the doomsday crowd
their last retreat is moving slow
they burn their bridges as they go
the heretic is beautified
he'll teach the harlot's child to smile

Wracked again by indecision
should we make that small incision
testify to the bleeding heart inside?
we cut, we scratched
we ran, we slashed
and when he opened up at last
found a cul-de-sac
deep and black
of smoke and ash

The wicked king of parody
is kissing all his enemies
on the seventh day
of the seventh week
the tyrant's voice is softer now
but just for one forgiving hour
before the rise of his
iron fist again
fist again

I've come tonight
I've come to know
the way we are
the way we'll go
come to measure this
the width of the wide abyss

I come to you in restless sleep
where all your dreams turn bittersweet
with voodoo doll philosophies
and day-glow holy trinities

the crooked raft that leaves the shore
ferries drunken souls aboard
pilgrims march to Compostela
visions of their saint in yellow

all follow deep in trance
lost in a catatonic dance
know no future
damn the past
blind, warm, ecstatic
safe at last...
Comments (87)add comment
 DavidS_UK wrote:
What a toneless load of old tosh!

 
Tosh? What twaddle!
Best "lead guitar" ever. Ok, way up there.
Apparently the 'old saws' apply...
Haters gonna hate.
Those who can't do....post.
 DavidS_UK wrote:
What a toneless load of old tosh!

 
Amen.
Here is my comment (from Blues Traveler's The Hook):

It doesn't matter what I say
So long as I sing with inflection

If that is what you want from a singer, Natalie Merchant is not your cup of tea. But that doesn't mean it's bad tea, it's just not your cup of tea. For me, that's another artist who is not Natalie Merchant, who I like (for her lyrics and her voice).

So I hit Play Something Different but don't rate down and try not to comment (by name).
 
 MrsTom wrote:
Can't see why this is disliked so much. She has fewer irritating vocal quirks than many female vocalists 


wgsu_1978 wrote:

I was enchanted with the color of Merchant's voice at first. Once her lack of range became apparent I lost interest. 

 
First of all, losing interest is demonstrably different from slagging the artist on the message board. 

Secondly, "lack of range" as a reason for not appreciating and artist's, especially one as nuanced as Ms. Merchant, work is a poor reason for losing interest.  Many people can hit higher or lower notes than Natalie.  That doesn't mean that they can sing.  Or write.  Or compose. Or perform.
 Proclivities wrote:

The going rate was $737,825.52 last time I checked.

 
{#Roflol}
This I must acquire!

thanks Bill! 
 MrsTom wrote:
Can't see why this is disliked so much. She has fewer irritating vocal quirks than many female vocalists 

 
I was enchanted with the color of Merchant's voice at first. Once her lack of range became apparent I lost interest. 
Can't see why this is disliked so much. She has fewer irritating vocal quirks than many female vocalists 
 bam23 wrote:
Tonight I heard the lyrics. This is not trite pop pablum. For reasons that defy logic, a disappointing number of listeners here choose to dislike her music almost as if it represents an affront to their esthetic standards. Listen to the music and make sense of the thought in the words and you may come to appreciate the artistry here, as I have.

 
Yes, enjoy the music -and- the lecture...
 Relayer wrote:
How much would I have to donate to remove Natalie from RP forever?  Another long drawn out slow song that has nothing going for it.  

 
The going rate was $737,825.52 last time I checked.
 Relayer wrote:
How much would I have to donate to remove Natalie from RP forever?  Another long drawn out slow song that has nothing going for it.  

 
I am happy to  experience her talent and voice here. I guess you can switch to other internet radio when Natalie's songs come on. If I'm not fond of something I rate it low and move on.
How much would I have to donate to remove Natalie from RP forever?  Another long drawn out slow song that has nothing going for it.  
This song would be a 10 for the amazing vocals and wistful lyrics, except the instrumentation really seems to have aged badly.
Hard to rate her. Her voice is so heavenly you can only rate her against her other songs...
 
 bam23 wrote:
Tonight I heard the lyrics. This is not trite pop pablum. For reasons that defy logic, a disappointing number of listeners here choose to dislike her music almost as if it represents an affront to their esthetic standards. Listen to the music and make sense of the thought in the words and you may come to appreciate the artistry here, as I have.

 
Has nothing to do with logic, and everything to do with aesthetics, opinion, and, is absolutely subjective. I have read the lyrics and given this album a chance, I just don't like her voice. I appreciate art, and artistry, but that does not mean I have to like it. 
 LizK wrote:
Count me as a fan.  This does have some weird phases in it, BUT, I like her voice.  Intelligent songwriting and a willingness to take risks. 

 
....yep, me too
Tonight I heard the lyrics. This is not trite pop pablum. For reasons that defy logic, a disappointing number of listeners here choose to dislike her music almost as if it represents an affront to their esthetic standards. Listen to the music and make sense of the thought in the words and you may come to appreciate the artistry here, as I have.
Count me as a fan.  This does have some weird phases in it, BUT, I like her voice.  Intelligent songwriting and a willingness to take risks. 
I got Natalie's album Leave your Sleep following plays on RP, and have been overwhelmed ever since by her. A lovely voice, an intelligent songwriter, and a seriously thoughtful person whose work moves me on a deep level. This song is in the same vein, and I'll have to get this CD toute de suite. 9 from the smitten Nottingham jury {#Hearteyes}
I like checking out the background of the music, but that rotten photo is an abberation on my eyes, equally awful to this assault on my ears
Palatable at best.
 denmom wrote:


Hmmm.  Would that be in the "damning with faint praise" department?

Can't stand her personally.  She goes out to sea on the raft with Neko Case, Fiona Apple, etc. etc.  The estrogen express.

 
I don't know Natalie Merchant "personally", so I couldn't say whether or not I could "stand her", but she doesn't seem at all to belong in the same boat as those other two (especially in terms of timbre and range) - unless it's a very large boat.  Stylistically, the only thing those three have in common is their gender.
 denmom wrote:
Can't stand her personally.  She goes out to sea on the raft with Neko Case, Fiona Apple, etc. etc.  The estrogen express.
 
Put me on that raft! A dream voyage and a middle-aged man's fantasy :o)
If you have your playback in phase....you will dig this
 ziakut wrote:
I really like Natalie in small doses. 
 
I am a strict homeopath when it comes to Ms. Merchant.

Vanishingly small doses preferred. 
I really like Natalie in small doses. 
Brilliant.  This album is so dark and beautiful.  I pretty much have to hear the track My Skin every time I hear any other track off the album.
Ok, but much prefer others on this album.  Ophelia, Break Your Heart, etc....
 Papernapkin wrote:
I like her shoes. The sofa is nice, too.
 
That about wraps it up for me as well.
What a toneless load of old tosh!
 mandolin wrote:
...this song suits her nicely, but ugh, that piano makes me wince!..
 
The tuner must have been on vacation, couple keys are flat
 
...this song suits her nicely, but ugh, that piano makes me wince!..
 denmom wrote:


Hmmm.  Would that be in the "damning with faint praise" department?

Can't stand her personally.  She goes out to sea on the raft with Neko Case, Fiona Apple, etc. etc.  The estrogen express.
 

I'd be on that raft in a second. You stay here and watch football.
 Papernapkin wrote:
I like her shoes. The sofa is nice, too.
 

Hmmm.  Would that be in the "damning with faint praise" department?

Can't stand her personally.  She goes out to sea on the raft with Neko Case, Fiona Apple, etc. etc.  The estrogen express.
i like Natalie's voice and music, . . but even with the nice shoes and satiny dress, she is no sex symbol!
 nate917 wrote:
Pretty grumpy reaction, it appears. Some of you must need a silver lining. Well, here you go: at least it's not Edie Brickell!
 
Quite true.  I'm not really interested in most of Natalie Merchant's stuff, but this is listenable to me; it differs from her usual output and at least it is not the aforementioned singer.


Nice - before she lost her voice
ugh - boring, pretentious
As for me, I have no problems with Natalie Merchant, I quite like some of her stuff, but Eddie Vedder makes me reach for the mute button...

 
vaiodon wrote:

I love this voice, Natalie Merchant has a similar effect on me to Eddie Vedder. I'm not saying they're similar voices, it's just the way the emotion processes. The searing guitar isn't too unfamiliar either.
 


I love this voice, Natalie Merchant has a similar effect on me to Eddie Vedder. I'm not saying they're similar voices, it's just the way the emotion processes. The searing guitar isn't too unfamiliar either.


Not to mention the satiny dress....
I like her shoes. The sofa is nice, too.
I like how this song makes me feel. I can't make out the words but that doesn't matter.
This song is missing my ears at this moment. Maybe some other time it'll catch, but right now... :yawn: :sleep: (A 3 for me)
I saw all these Daniel Lanois comments, and didn't know where they were coming from because I could hardly tell of any guitar, but Lanois definitely outshines once his guitar kicks in.
That's What It Is!!
Make her disappear. Please, please just make her disappear.
The Lanois bits make the song ... so that's a bit of a large except. s Coppertop wrote:
Except for the Lanois bits, this is a dull and or boring song. She drones on and on. The piano, much like her singing, drones on and on as well.