Fiona Apple is releasing a new album called Fetch the Bolt Cutters, and she spoke about it to The New Yorker's Emily Nussbaum in a recent profile.
In it, she discusses her new album and her enduring legacy, and she dredges up a little dirt on her ex, Paul Thomas Anderson.
Nussbaum writes, "[Apple] had quit cocaine years earlier, after spending 'one excruciating night' at Quentin Tarantino's house, listening to him and Anderson brag. 'Every addict should just get locked in a private movie theatre with Q.T. and P.T.A. on coke, and they'll never want to do it again," she joked. "She went on to describe Tarantino as 'coldly critical [and] contemptuous' and labeled her relationship with Anderson 'painful and chaotic.'"
Today, Apple seems to be living a subdued existence—a far cry from her "Criminal" days. "These days, the singer-songwriter, who is forty-two, rarely leaves her tranquil house, in Venice Beach, other than to take early-morning walks on the beach with Mercy," writes Nussbaum, which sounds like a perfect recipe for self-isolation. She's also been funding dog rescues and spending a lot of time with her own pup, a pitbull-boxer mix named Mercy.
Fetch the Bolt Cutters is Apple's first album in eight years. The title is inspired by a Gillian Anderson quote from the British police TV show The Fall. In the show, Anderson's character—a detective who hunts serial killers and sex criminals—tells someone to "fetch the bolt cutters" when she finds a locked door, behind which a young girl was tortured.
Apparently the album involves a fair number of unconventional instruments—"dirt-filled oilcans, rattling seedpods, even the bones of Apple's dead dog Janet," according to Rolling Stone. It also stars Apple's sister, Amber, on harmonies.
"Really, what it's about is not being afraid to speak," Apple told The New Yorker, adding that she was considering a sketch of Harvey Weinstein in a walker for the album cover. It's also about Apple's efforts to "not fall in love with the women who hate me" and to confront her "shadow self."
In the end, it's about the same themes that have made her into an avatar for vulnerability throughout her career. "I say the right thing, but I look the wrong way, so they say something about the way I look... I look the right way, but I say the wrong thing, so they say something mean about what I said," she told Nussbaum. "I have a temper. I have lots of rage inside. I have lots of sadness inside of me. And I really, really, really can't stand assh*les. If I'm in front of one, and I happen to be in a public place, and I lose my shit—and that's a possibility—that's not going to be any good to me, but I won't be able to help it, because I'll want to defend myself."
Fetch the Bolt Cutters will be released in early 2020.