A Perfect Circle’s album Thirteenth Step is one of my all-time favourites. I listened to it hundreds of times between 2005 and 2009, when I finally got over my first ex-boyfriend and discovered the wonderful world of post-punk.
APC toured Australia earlier this year as part of Soundwave Festival. The announcement stirred up nostalgic memories of teenage angst, and I looked up the album on streaming service Rdio so I could listen to it on the tram home.
Here’s how Thirteenth Step appears in my iTunes library:
And this is the correct track order, as it appears on Rdio:
It turns out that the burned CD I imported into iTunes in 2005 had a jumbled track list, which means I’ve been listening to a botched version of Thirteenth Step for nearly a decade.
If you’re the type of person who buys a song or two off iTunes a year and is otherwise happy to listen to whatever’s on the radio, track listings might not be a particularly big deal to you.
I am not that type of person. I am one of those obnoxious people who buy albums and then talk about the flow of them, and you know what needs to flow? The order of the tracks. The track listing for Thirteenth Step is more important than most, as it’s based around the “12 step” program of recovery from substance about.
Tori Amos’ debut album Little Earthquakes was released as per the record label’s request – minus a few songs and with a completely different flow. Tori re-released the album in its original form as part of her eight-disc b-sides and rarities set, A Piano, and I have to say – I can see why her record label intervened.
I realise I could’ve avoided this problem by actually purchasing a copy of Thirteenth Step, but I’ve become attached to my muddled version. I think the album is stronger opening with ‘The Nurse Who Loved Me‘ and ending with the moody co-dependent love song ‘Weak and Powerless‘ – particularly considering the album’s supposed to be based around the theme of addiction.
Still, there are A Perfect Circle/Tool fans out there who are more tragic than I am. At least I’m not a perfect tool.