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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Exile In Guyville

Liz Phair

1993

Wikipedia

Exile In Guyville

Rating

2.95

Votes

3340

Reviews

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5

Has sexual politics ever been better? More tuneful? More truthful? Smarter? When I'm listening to this, I'm inclined to say no. Especially now I've just learnt Phair wrote the whole thing as a track-by-track response to Exile On Main Street. It's also the birthplace of today's voguish Bedroom Rock sound (Japanese Breakfast, Soccer Mommy, Beabadoobee, to name a few from the last year). But somewhere along the line things got sadder, less melodic, less funny. What you get from Phair that you don't get from the new crop are the seemingly infitine personality facets. Here, Liz is a real cunt in Spring and your blowjob queen. She's tested by the male-dominated music industry to see how far she'll bend. She wants to be fuck you till your dick turns blue, jumps when you circle the cherry, and wants to be mesmerizing too. She also gets away with what the girls call murder, is done with the fuck and run game she's been playing since she was 12, and wants a boyfriend. But then again, the boys are just heroes "in a long line of heroes, looking for something attractive to save". And if you don't believe one person can be that complex, there are 18 songs on this thing. And if you don't believe one person can be that complex and prolfic AND consistent, marvel at how she's still able to pull a hook like Stratford-On-Guy out the bag at track 17. Just marvel.

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5

If Exile in Guyville is shockingly assured and fully formed for a debut album, there are a number of reasons why. Most prominent of these is that many of the songs were initially essayed on Liz Phair's homemade cassette Girlysound, which means that the songs are essentially the cream of the crop from an exceptionally talented songwriter. Second, there's its structure, infamously patterned after the Stones' Exile on Main St., but not the song-by-song response Phair promoted it as. (Just try to match the albums up: is the "blow-job queen" fantasy of "Flower" really the answer to the painful elegy "Let It Loose"?) Then, most notably, there's Phair and producer Brad Wood's deft studio skills, bringing a variety of textures and moods to a basic, lo-fi production. There is as much hard rock as there are eerie solo piano pieces, and there's everything in between from unadulterated power pop, winking art rock, folk songs, and classic indie rock. Then, there are Phair's songs themselves. At the time, her gleefully profane, clever lyrics received endless attention (there's nothing that rock critics love more than a girl who plays into their geek fantasies, even -- or maybe especially -- if she's mocking them), but years later, what still astounds is the depth of the writing, how her music matches her clear-eyed, vivid words, whether it's on the self-loathing "Fuck and Run," the evocative mood piece "Stratford-on-Guy," or the swaggering breakup anthem "6'1"," or how she nails the dissolution of a long-term relationship on "The Divorce Song." Each of these 18 songs maintains this high level of quality, showcasing a singer/songwriter of immense imagination, musically and lyrically. If she never equaled this record, well, few could.

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5

It was next to impossible to find new music in 1993, especially albums from a relatively new and obscure female artist who wanted to be your blow job queen and fuck you until your dick turns blue. The internet wasn't yet a thing, MTV and FM radio wouldn't touch such material, and we had to rely on reviews from Rolling Stone and Spin Magazine to even learn something like this existed. Even then, I don't recall any local record store carrying this album on cassette or compact disc, and I doubt Columbia House offered this album either. So it wasn't until the Wild West Era of Napster that I finally heard Exile In Guyville, and it's become one of my go-to albums ever since then. Sometimes I think this is the best debut album ever. It's certainly one of the top 5. Every song is written by Phair as a track by track response to the Stones' classic "Exile On Main Street". If the algorithm had any sense of humor, they'd recommend both albums consecutively to everyone. If listening on Spotify, make sure you listen to the remastered version with all 18 tracks available, as the link here goes to the old version where Spotify doesn't include some of the songs for whatever reason. Liz Phair would achieve more popular success after this landmark album, but never get back to this level of openness and rawness. A trailblazer like Liz Phair knew there's no way to top this masterpiece. If I could only keep 10 albums from this list, this would absolutely be one of them. Pour one out for the amazing Liz Phair. She'll fuck you and your minions, too.

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5

Bold and brash. I loved this. Had never heard of if, but I can hear her in all the young solo artists that I listen to all the time now

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4

What a journey I went on with this album. I listened to it in two parts. The first portion on Friday, where my experience of it was as interesting enough background music, that didn’t wrassle for my attention too strongly with whatever else I was doing. Today, though, I picked up where I left off - with Canary - and something had shifted. Maybe it was that England lost the biggest game they’d played in my lifetime in the most painful way possible, but I heard what I think Ms Phair was selling. Her songs suddenly struck me from two angles - 1.) the stark, surprising lyrics: chock full of a certain kind of sexual ennui, oscillating occasionally into revelry and back again. 2.) The songs themselves, roughly hewn, simple-sounding but they have the same punch as anything by that other purveyor of rough-hewn, simple-sounding guitar-led songs from the 90s, Kurt Cobain; and honestly, I realised she is the first artist I think to ever draw comparison with Kurt in my mind as a peer and equal rather than an imitator. And I realise that possibly sounds like damning with faint praise, but it’s not intended as such. I’m so pleased I didn’t just settle on basing my review on my experience of the first half of the album. Well worth it.

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3

Feels like a usual indie rock album, it's a bit too long but it's enjoyable. Lots of tracks aren't that unique though, some of them feel too generic

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3

Not terrible, but not my favorite either. I like Liz's voice.

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2

Turns out Liz Phair isn't a great singer. I assume this album was chosen because of it's writing...but it's hard to pay attention to the lyrics when the singing is so bad.

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5

6'1"

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5

Great and groundbreaking

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5

Really enjoyed the album

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5

This was really good!

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5

this album has so much personality to it. fantastic storytelling. the lyrical style reminds me of mitski at times but its even better. i think it could've used a little more musical variety, a lot of the melodies got monotonous, although overall the energy/pacing was good. 9/10

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5

What a killer rock album. Excellent songwriting throughout and killer tunes to match. Every song is POWERFUL.

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5

I really should’ve listened to this long ago. It’s very much my shit. Great songwriting, shaggy, yet just polished enough production. Definitely earns the hype.

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5

Pretty bad ass!

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5

These are good songs and I think they are holding up well. Love the idea of this album being a song by song reply to Exile on Main Street. The stripped down sound is perfect. Didn't connect until this listen that "Shatter" is often used as background music for This American Life.

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5

For someone who cares so much about musicianship, it might seem odd that I like Exile in Guyville so much. Liz Phair isn't much of a guitarist, and has a rough voice, to be generous. But the songwriting! The way Phair structures the songs on Exile is clever, interesting, and wholly original. The skeletal arrangements actually work in the album's favor, accentuating the songwriting and lyrics, which are uniformly wonderful. And for all of Phair's technical shortcomings as a singer, her interpretive skills set these songs on fire--she's completely naked emotionally. And, if that weren't enough, there's tremendous range in these songs, from rockers to drones and everything in between. Damned near perfect for what it is.

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5

Really fantastic. Great attitude, equal parts funny and strong. I've grown to be a big fan of this kind of music of late with artists like Soccer Mommy and Mitski, so to hear something from '93 this good has made me very happy.

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5

I LOVE HER!!! Liz Phair, your music helped define my 2021! 4.5

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5

Liiiiiz

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5

Good album, enjoyed it a lot! Very well done, will need to revisit to listen more

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5

Really really liked this, great album with some catchy songs and some pretty slow ones, nice variety and a very good listen!

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5

lmao how did she go from this to “you’re being a penis… colada that is!” A

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5

This album is badass and awesome. Required listening for young women.

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5

I remember feeling empowered by this album in high school and that feeling remains. The low-fi guitar, mixed with funny yet true lyrics does what feminism does best…make sure that everyone knows that anything a guy can do, a girl can do as good, if not better. Though this album is situated in the 90’s, it is timeless and forward thinking.

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5

Some cracking tunes!

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4

Very intense, raw energy to it.

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4

All I had heard was "Why Can't I?" but I knew she was a staple of the 90s when it came to rocker females. And rock she did.

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4

это альбом с не самым сильным женским голосом, не самым лучшим продакшеном, но он узнаваем. этот красивый и милый инди-поп с примесью кантри не собирался стать великим, но критики решили на него молиться. альбом обладает несколькими мощными хитами вроде «Never Said» и «Fuck and Run», которые для целого поколения стали родными. Смотря на такое восхваление критиков возникает важный вопрос, а слушали ли критики вторую часть альбома, ведь если убрать четыре песни из промежутка «Girls! Girls! Girls!» до «Flower», то изменится лишь хронометраж. Поэтому 4, недотянуто до идеала.

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4

Don’t know about the exile on Main Street connection, but great nonetheless

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4

Great album, edgy Kate Bush that sounds like it's had a lot of influence on heaps of alt rock punk stuff around today especially in Aus. Dance of the Seven Veils, Mesmerising, Girls!.., Divorce Song all massive tunes.

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4

Not my thing. Although I can appreciate what this is, and some songs like F and Run kinda struck an interesting nerve. Almost like Cody Chestnutt did in a way.

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4

I find this very ovverated critically... it’s a solid record for sure. I don’t see this worthy of all the perfect reviews

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4

Lots of good songs.

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4

Swagger and confidence.

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4

this was rly good

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4

Yeah!

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4

No sé cómo descubrí este disco en su momento, pero me gustó mucho. Además el título, la portada, las canciones tienen un hilo conductor con un mensaje bastante claro e interesante. Canciones como Help Me Mary, Mesmerizing, Fuck And Run o Johnny Sunshine. Un gran disco que merece la pena escuchar.

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4

I can see how this is on this list. It's not my favorite style of music but I did enjoy some of the lyrics.

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4

Creo que nunca había escuchado a Liz Phair y muy agradable. Se puede distinguir ahora ese sonido noventero y a ratos me sonaba como un mashup de The Cranberries con un poco de PJ, algo de Fiona, hasta me cuestioné si existe una categoría llamada "rock de mujeres" así como hay "escritura de mujeres" (según). Varios moods, todo a su punto, ya fuera algo más ligero o divertidón. Canciones fav: "6'1''", "Never Said", "Explain It To Me" y "Fuck and Run". 8.5/10

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4

A special record, to dive in and explore on subsequent listenings. Very 90s. Very good.

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4

Pues cómo que sí fue underwhelming. No sé que esperaba exactamente pero igual... Me gustó Help Me Mary suena super super años 90. Mood: rockero, peo no lo suficiente

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4

7/10. Maybe deserved an 8 as it was definitely quite good, but it did get a bit samey listening to the whole thing, and it's not really my style.

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4

Really good. Not something you listened to song by song or very often.

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4

never heard of Liz Phair, but this was fun. Like.... an indie Alanis Morrisette

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4

Felt real sad but sounded great. 8

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4

no

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4

Never listened to Liz Phair. Love her style. very Good album.

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4

Love it

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4

Good storyteller. She could be strong and vulnerable simultaneously eg. Fuck and Run and Shatter. Was also intrigued by the edginess/unique production of Flower.

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4

4.5

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4

Great guitar riffs and a “fuck you” attitude throughout the whole album

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4

I was surprised I liked it alot

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4

Brilliant confessional singer-songwriting, this consistently engaging album is witty, caustic and unabashed.

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4

she hits an emotional chord like few others do with her lyrics. My natural cynicism is now compounded by emotions.

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4

Sounds like Courtney Barnett, or more she sounds like her.

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4

I expected some pre-packaged 2000’s trash pop. Instead I got a moody, thoughtful singer-songwriter gem that I would never have found without this website. It took forever to figure this out, she sounds like Johnny Cash Does Indie Grunge. Shatter is amazing. The guitar sounds like The Durutti Column (i.e. haunting, eerie, heartfelt). Divorce song was an enthralling listen, as was Stratford-On-Guy. I did not expect to give this album more than 3 stars, but it is a very strong 4!

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4

o woman you

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4

Great lyrics. Edgy. Enjoyable sound. "Flower" is a great song.

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4

Good one! I dig her voice and the music - somehow both relaxing and uncomfortable at the same time. Will listen again.

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4

4.0 + This album wins because it’s honest. Liz Phair can’t sing or really play guitar. All she can be is herself and that’s what I hear on this record.

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4

I got into this a year or so after it came out and just loved it a lot, and still give it the occasional listen. Decades after the fact I still think it's very good. The signing is not terribly strong, though in that it's a class in playing to your strengths. And despite being very much a young person's product the lyrics still hold up. Certainly still a landmark of a certain facet of the 90s indie sound.

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4

I like Liz Phair. Makes me feel nostalgic. Wasn't a huge fan back in the day but had many friends who were.

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4

compelling lyrics

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4

Liked it!

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4

This was pretty cool but not much stuck out for me

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4

Brave to make this, brave to publish it, and wonderfully strange that such raw unpolished girl power was wildly successful. It’s rather inconsistent, but the good tracks are just phenomenal. 6’1”, Dance of the 7 Veils, Explain it to Me, Divorce Song, Flower, and Gunshy for me.

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4

Liked it, feels empowering

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4

I kept listening to half of this, then getting sidetracked and coming back to it a week later. Happily, it kept growing on me each time. It's got raw punk-leaning rock moments, bluesy americana vibes, and vulnerable emotional stuff, all mixed into an indie rock package (but back before indie sucked). Name your favourite 1990s alt-rock album and this is probably better! I like her voice and songwriting quite a lot. It's fun and self-aware but genuine. 4.5*

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4

most excellent.

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4

My first impression listening to track 1 is that the sound is quirky & fresh (even 30 years later) and she's clever, in a good way, and a bit angry maybe. The only song I was familiar with was The Divorce Song which had blunt, personal lyrics that really capture a relationship gone sour. For me, she could be a bit less explicit. I’m sure I've ranted on this before (maybe for rap albums?) but I think that great lyricists don’t need obscenity to catch your attention. I mean, Fuck & Run is a good song but does it get so many more plays because it's that much better than others or is it the title? She uses sex to sell herself, as this and a few of her other LP covers show, but it's with tongue planted in cheek.

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4

Grungey 90s songwriter, low key pretty good

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4

Enjoyed this very much, had never heard of her before. Great lyrics and a groovy sound will defo check her work out.

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4

Musically, this is interesting, being a sassy mixture of up-tempo guitar based alternative pop/rock and mellow(ish) acoustic folk-rock. Her muttering vocal style sounds better on the mellower acoustic numbers like the short 'Glory', bluesy 'Soap Star Joe', folky 'Explain It To Me', experimental/avant-garde on 'Canary' and personal on ''Shatter'. To begin with I wasn't sure, at times her offhand delivery makes her sound a little off key (like the line "I wanna boyfriend" on 'Fuck and Run') but it's quite an arty & personal alternative styled album. My emotions ranged from finding her annoying early on to feeling a little sorry for her towards the end. Probably a few too many songs though.

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4

I liked this, but didn't love it. I feel like it sorta grew on me over two listens, however, and think I'd like it more on future listens. It reminds me Breeders or something to that effect. 3.75/5. rounding up to 4/5

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4

Finger pointin' relationship songs, played in a stripped back indie rock way. Just great. Best Tracks: 6'1; Fuck and Run; Divorce Song

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4

Solid 4 for lyricism

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4

Rock indie. Interesante

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4

Quirky 90s indie rock. Overall not too bad, but the instrumentation is a little sparse; I'd have liked to have heard bigger production and more distortion. a pretty good album though

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3

this kinda blend with songs of its time, like i can listen to it but i can easily forget abt it

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3

Just ok. No clue how this got ranked as #56 of all time by RS

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3

Not great not terrible, extra star for the nip

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3

Common alt-rock with interesting vocal

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3

Exceedingly average

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3

Very good, feel like I only scratched the surface though. Will need to listen again but on the day it's a 3 from me

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3

I like the feel of it, just lacking a little more quality.

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3

Ok. Nice voice. Glad I listened to it but probably wont go looking for more

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3

Pretty good. Grungy. I can hear the influence she had on so many female musicians.

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3

Was hoping I wouldn't get a rock album for once. It's clearly more lyrics focused, they're very straightforward and to the point. This is definitely one of those albums written to get some shit off the artist's chest, no filter and no bullshit. The instrumentation is a little weak and generic though, which is something I look for first before I even listen to the lyrics. That being said I can see myself being in the mood for this kind of aesthetic.

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3

pues la primer mitad un poco lenta pero se medio compone después, se nota que es bien alternativo el pedo que traía esta vieja

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3

That’s a nip on the album cover

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3

i resonated with her idgaf attitude, some songs were bland

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3

Thank you 90s!!! I remember reading once that the one thing the Red Hot Chili Peppers collectively agreed on is their crush for Liz phair

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3

Very good album. Slick guitar sound and nice vocals. 7/10

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3

3.5 | Ni idea sobre ella ni sobre el disco. Que album tan curioso, tremendamente explícito y obsceno pero con una instrumentación típica de ese rock alternativo 90ero que era medio inofensivo, a veces tan minimalista que hasta la batería elimina. Se siente como si fuera una cantante de folk superagresivo. Justamente esa canción más explícita de todas siento que también es la más interesante en su arreglo (Flower, por supuesto). A pesar de todo el disco es bastante más que solo tratar de espantar con letras sexuales, en general si hay buena composición y escritura; me parece algo triste que busqué un poco más sobre esta mujer y... TODO lo demás que escuche se me hizo bastante X sin inspiración y mientras más adelante en los años peor se ha escuchado. De verdad parece que tenía un album muy brillante dentro de sí y nada más. Se me hace que fácilmente ha de ser esos discos que ha de haber inspirado a muchas mujeres y que se interpreta como muy feminista, aunque no parece que era la intención de Phair. Un lugar en la lista para un trabajo femenino, con carácter, de rock alternativo bastante bien hecho, quizá no es mi máximo pero su lugar lo tiene muy merecido. ¿Cómo podría alguien odiar algo con la letra "Obnoxious, funny, true, and mean, I want to be your blowjob queen"?

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3

Reminds me a lot of Lisa Germano, but less weird (and thus, in my book, less good) but yeah, acceptable early nineties alt rock singer songwriteriness. Fave track - "Soap Star Joe", had some amusing lyrics that caught my attention...

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3

No thanks.

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3

Bonne chanteuse, j’ai bien aime et ca a passe vite comme ecout en background. 3.85

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3

I think 30ish minutes of Liz Phair would have been a solid album. Generally, the production style and music is compelling, but it just didn’t hold up for almost a full hour without getting pretty boring and samey. 6

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3

Egzotycznie brzmiące nazwy zarówno albumiku jak i artysty i maly cyc na okladze nic mi nie mowil, okazalo sie, ze to albumik indyjskiego rocka, ale jest to undergrundowa produkcja, wiec low fi pelna geba, nie tylko to slychac przez to w jaki sposob jest zmasterowany, jak wykonane overduby, ale glownie przez liryczny kontent, bo jest on do bolu szczery, a jak to w muzyce niepopularnej glonym topikiem bedzie seks lekarstwa i turlanie kamienia, ale jest to pisane, ze gdybym mial zgadywac z jakiego roku albumik, to strzelalbym na okolice 2k10 i bum internetowych grajkow spiewakowych, ktore zalalo swiat za sprawa rozpowszechnienia sie serwisow strimingowych, a nie wczesne lata 90, bo o ile jeszcze poczatek plyty do never said, czyli najbardziej popowego kawalka jaki mozna tu uslyszec, to dalej slychac coraz to coraz to odwazniejsze eksperymenty, nie tylko jesli chodzi o kompozycje instrumentalna, ktora w niektoych miejsach jest wrecz minimalistyczna i sa nawet kawalki jedynie z klawiszami kreconymi synthem, czy gitarkowaniem Pani Liz, lirycznie dzwie sie, ze tak jednolity tematycznie jest albumik, bo wszystko mozna sprowadzic do relacji miedzy ludzkich, dobitnie pokazuje to track flower, ktory byl dla mnie kwintesencja tego co slyszalem w poprzednich kawalkach, wokal i klimat kojarzy mi sie z NANA, moze znalazlem pierwowzor nany, na plejke wrzuce gunshy oraz soap star joe

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3

(3.5) I feel like I wouldn't like Liz Phair as much if I didn't enjoy seeing her so much in concert (she opened for The Smashing Pumpkins and I barely knew her music beyond "Why Cant I?"), but she does have a cool stage presence and is fun to watch live. A lot of her songs are pretty catchy too, and short and sweet; I never feel like her songs go on for too long. I saw her tagged as "slacker rock" on RYM and I think that's probably a good way to describe her music?

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3

Conflicted... Really liked this musically (very basic and effective guitar) and was fully enjoying until I paid attention to the lyrics a little. Not terrible, but not great (ie. Divorce song?). After looking up the lyrics though, there are definitely some pearls along the way and the context of the album certainly makes it worthy of this list. Awesome to hear some more females in this little adventure and this was a pretty brave and outspoken record for the time so big points for that. Pretty bland voice, but really cool melodies. The drums left a lot to be desired though - very hollow if heard at all and Explain to Me was proper out of time - sounded like a poorly joined loop! Tough one to rate.

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3

Simple indie rock, doesn't wow me but it's still pretty good.

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3

Het eerste nummer had me niet mee, en in het hele verloop van het album werd daar geen verandering ingebracht. Het gitaarwerk is wel oké

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3

Just, but just, an OK background music piece. But too close to boredom.

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3

Decent. Some great songs, but I think too long and one note.

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3

Phair shows her roots with quick-witted lyrics and shorter tunes. What is missing is any remarkable single or thing that sticks with you.

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3

Great album

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3

Got better by the end, first tracks felt a bit unpolished and underwhelming. But I like what this album represented for the 90s

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3

Surprisingly good.

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3

A bit raw. Liz is ok in small doses. Not my favorite but not bad.

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3

Like an 80s Joni Mitchell. Glad to have listened although probably wouldn’t relisten.

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3

Gritty and hard-to-listen-to lyrics delivered with emotion and catchy tunes. Has you happily singing along to inappropriate and embarrassing songs. Gets better with every listen.

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3

not my style

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3

3/5 Not really catchy, sounds like the radio

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3

3,5 star but not 4. Okay-ish but totally forgettable music

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3

Pretty intense lyrically, but some good songs

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3

Fun album, would listen to it again.

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3

yeah, this was fine. i didn't much care for her music back then, and i really don't now, although i absolutely love her unwillingness (at least on this album, i've never met her or anything) to take absolutely no shit whatsoever.

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3

liked how raw the lyrics were

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3

3/5 interesting but nope.

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3

the female Elliot Smith but not as good

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3

Phairly decent

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3

Phairly good.

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3

Good album…should have been a couple of songs shorter but good variety in songs

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3

Loose, sparse. Seems fitting that I listened to this in the Seattle area (even though Liz was based in Chicago): very riot grrl, lo-fi, grungy. Certain points I was into, certain points not so much. Eighteen songs is a bit long. Favorite tracks: "Fuck and Run", "Divorce Song", "Soap Star Joe", "Shatter"

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3

Liz Phair walked so that Garbage could run. Suffers from the problem with first albums where Liz has recorded nearly every song she's ever written so there's a real mess of genres and songs that probably could of been cut with no great loss. Overall I'm enjoying listening to this

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3

Kind of caught me off-guard how honest/explicit some of the lyrics were in comparison to the voice. Not bad, but nothing blew me away.

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3

Ahead of her time. Really helped pioneer the feminist rock movement. Liz Phair was always unapologetically crass and sexual in her lyrics when it was still a double standard where men could be crude but women had to be proper in their songs. My only knock is Musically, it takes a few interesting turns but kind of sticks in the same generic realm. Fave songs: “Fuck and Run” “Help Me Mary” Fave Tracks:

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3

Love the righteous anger, hate the singing voice. Best track: The Divorce Song

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3

-Damn they actually kinda go ham in "Strange Loop" -I like the fast-paced lyrics on 'Flower" and "Johnny Sunshine" -This is stronger than the average singer songwriter album

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3

Enjoyed this one. Cool songs and lyrics. Very 90s dropped D. Angsty songs fav was the divorce song though none of the others really stood out. 3.5

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3

The best from this album IMO: - Glory - Never Said - Mesmerizing - Gunshy - Stratford-On-Guy Not bad. Very interesting chords at times. Some songs remind me of Blur. 3.3/5

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3

Say, this sounds like it influenced a lot of 90s indie music.

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3

My 90s crush on flat singers is still running strong. Juliana Hatfield all the way. Sorry Liz. I'm a Lemonhead.

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3

I knew a few songs. Enjoyable album.

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3

i can understand why its held in the esteem it is. not my bag though

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3

Kind of a boring, overlong album, innit?

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3

I can hear this albums influence on many records in the indie world since it was released. Points for that. I have to say that I think listening to the album is a mixed bag though. There are some solid songs but I think they are outnumbered by songs that do little for me by about a 2 to 1 ratio.Yet another album that really could've edited down a bit in my opinion. 2 stars for the music 1 for the lasting influence

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3

Nice band feel to this, despite being a solo effort. Proper guitar, drums and bass set up. Powers through, right from the opening chords of the first track. It loses some of the bite when the sound is stripped down to just guitar and vocals. Still, a mighty impressive debut.

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3

Not usually a fan of singer-songwriter material. Always feel that the songs will be nice when they’re finished. And Phair’s voice sounds a bit strained in places - even from the start. But I do quite admire the no-holds-barred lyrics and subject matter. Not my usual style of listening choice but warmed to it more as it progressed, especially when other instruments got involved, such as the extra guitar on Mesmerizing or the synth loops and doubled vocals on Flower. 2.5 stars

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3

3.5/5

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3

Liz Phair - Exile In Guyville Canary She lost herself on the way back home, trying to find any solution of where's north, to go opposite. Rough vocals, grunge era and purple static, that's the recipe for an ordinary album in the middle of the 90s. Few tracks connect stories that Liz told about Johnny and her affairs, during the same time the tracklist go up and down as the instruments and her vocals are rusting and tearing apart all the way. Creating heroes, losing their minds and fame, while who takes the advice and glory is the one and only Liz walking alone in Guyville. C

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3

I can totally hear the indie rock and alternative influence this has had on music. Could get better with more listens.

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3

There are a number of decent songs on this. The first 5 come to mind. After that it's hit and miss. It would be higher rated if they had culled some of the filler rather than making a 56 min album. The indie stuff had a role in the music scene but some of it is boring.

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3

possibly would have gobbled this up as a teenager, got my alternate sources of feminist indie locked in these days

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3

Narrow and a bit one-note-y as many cult classics are. When this came out, I remember thinking “what’s all the fuss?” though the endorsement of all the cool chicks made an impression. Yes, it’s substantive. And certainly the cleverness, raw emotion, pluck and attitude of the songs’ “characters” are all appealing. It also overreaches and/or seems to be trying too hard at times. “Fuck and Run” is a minor classic and “Never Said” and “Canary” are easy to like. Super resonant of the ‘90s, a borderline relic, actually; would sharper or more expansive production have made this more timeless? She’s more than a one-hit wonder, sure, but it’s only one record so maybe a “one-off” wonder? 3.5 is the score, rounding down.

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3

The music style is very different from the album cover lol The start of Canary is a star.

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3

The album is straight forward, raw in parts and laser focused on telling the story of a woman afloat in a setting that is as ill-fitting as hand-me-down clothes. The emotional baseline of the album isn't explosive or outraged like some of Liz's female-lead contemporaries (i.e. Alanis), but much more dry-witted and ambivalent akin to Courtney Barnett (who I really hope is on this list!) For exemplary paired down tracks, I'd point to 'Girls! Girls! Girls!' and 'Shatter'. For songs that include the band, I enjoyed 'Never Said' and 'Divorce Song'. Floating somewhere in between the two vibes are great tracks like 'Soap Star Joe'.

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3

Not my favorite Liz Phair album, but still a good one.

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3

I can see why this album was included, Liz Phair was considered a breakout female star on the 90s alternative rock scene, and for supporting Smashing Pumpkins. For an angsty, sexual empowered, vocal-led singer/songwriter - it's alright. Feels like it paved the way for the likes of Alanis Morissette, Tracey Bonham, et al. Could have been half the length and still had the same impact.

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3

This is pretty cool. It def has that 90s alternative vibe, but Liz has quite a bit more going on than her poppier peers of the time. I’m surprised that this reminds me more of Sleater-Kinney than Alanis, but I really dig Phair’s atmospheric songwriting. It’s definitely LONG, but she covers so much ground it all feels essential - even if not on a single listen. 3.5

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3

grows on you

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3

Ágætis væb á þessari plötu en hún er svolítið löng og lögin renna dálítið saman því útsetningarnar eru ansi einfaldar, þótt gítarpartarnir séu það kannski ekki. Renndi henni tvisvar, kannski að ég yrði hrifnari í þriðja sinnið.

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3

While there's definitely some radio filler on here, most of the LP shines with mesmerizing songwriting and decent instrumentals. I'm not big on lyrics so much as form, but Phair's vocals make it impossible to ignore the narrative structures that clearly drive each track.

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3

This is pretty good, but it's hard to escape a feeling of losing the thread a bit in the last third or so. Phair claimed to have had the idea to "respond" to the Rolling Stones' Exile on Main Street at some point in making this, and it kind of feels like some songs are there mainly to make up the numbers. I do suspect this is one I'll get more from on relistens.

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2

Its ok

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2

Terrible album cover

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2

Mostly 1-stars but Girls! Girls! Girls! and Gunshy are honestly pleasant to listen to.

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2

Sé que ustedes no se picaron con How I Met Your Mother, pero el disco me recordó la fase "oscura" de Robin Daggers, AKA Robin Sparkles (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kdEExeQ8D8U) Trata de ser tan oscuara y tan cruda que parece una parodia de Alanis Morissette. Eso no es tan terrible y un par de canciones medio me gustaron, sin embargo, no creo que sea suficiente para estar en la lista. 2.5 no más por Fuck and Run.

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2

Siento que este album envejeció mal. Por lo que leí en los detalles, cuando salió fue altamente aclamado y alcanzó buenos lugares de venta, pero no me pareció tan bueno. Parece como un precursor de Natalie Imbruglia o Meredith Brooks, pero más indie, y seguro para su época fue un disco algo atrevido y vanguardista. No guardé ninguna canción.

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2

This isn’t my sound. But it sounds like a reasonable version of that sound. 5/10

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2

Her more famous songs on this didn't really grab me. I most enjoyed Mesmerizing, Divorce Song, and Stratford-on-Guy.

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2

Meh, wasn't overly interested.

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2

Generally acceptable 90s indie rock. Very of its era. Very potty mouthed. Too long.

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2

Not good. But not too offensive

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2

Tuneful in places, out of key singing in others.Wouldn’t listen again. 2*

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2

Eh

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2

Bloated tracklist, but there are some real gems in there too. I see why it's on here even if I don't think its a "great" album. I just wish it was more refined.

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2

Seems like a powerful female record. Her voice wasn't great to listen to. Not my thing, but I can see why people would like it.

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2

DNF. 90s rock isn’t really for me I guess. But it was nice to try.

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2

super meh

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2

Angsty guitar-driven singer-songwriter stuff. Grungy power-chord transitions but not that heavy. Not a lot of standout tracks, and the bored-sounding vocals got tiring after a while.

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2

Pretty boring. Ok I guess. I don’t get why it was acclaimed.

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2

i really did not like the voice it was incredibly irritating but i did like the music so the songs without so much singing i enjoyed however the voice was just plain bad. i woukd give a 5/10 and a 2.5 but i cant so i’ll round down

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2

Typical 90s shite. Awful decade

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2

I'm a little underwhelmed

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2

Meh. That is all.

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2

not a fan

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2

Ehhhhh. I'm sure it means something to a different audience, but it's not my jam.

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2

Middling tunes let down by half the vocals being completely out of tune.

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2

nicht meins

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2

No le encontré la gracia sinceramente. Pero la Rolling Stones la puso n° 56 en el ranking de los mejores discos de la historia.

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2

With some of these albums I don't have the slightest clue why they might be on here. This is one of those albums. This was a complete waste of time. Not interesting in any kind of way and not really good in any way either.

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2

Meh

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2

Ok

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2

Interesting sound - low production. Sounds like a guitar plugged strait into an amp and recorded. A bit dull.

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2

I listened to this album once before, because of general recommendations that this is a good album. I did not like it then, and not much more now. Phair's drone singing, and the lyrics keep me from wanting to hear more from Phair. I'm done.

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2

Nee dit was hem niet echt, niet mijn jam

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2

idk ! not my thing i didnt like the sound sorry women everywhere

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2

Boring and way too long.

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2

yeah nice, but boring

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2

:-(

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2

Amerikansk 90’er indierock, singer/songwriter, udmærket lyrik, lidt for meget larm

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2

I see that lots of folks love this album but it simply did not resonate with me.

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2

Sedate. Odd.

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2

she sounds like a county vocalist, her vocal style doesn't match the music at all. 75% of the songs don't lead to nothing, they are built just like snippets. all in all, this is a generic 90's alt rock album. kinda boring, wished for it to end. the only good thing is the semi-distorted guitar, it is very nice.

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2

I didn't really care for the album. I made it through it without skipping any songs. I was not previously aware of the album or the artist. I am not quite sure how to describe the music. It really isn't punk or grunge but there are elements of those genres. It certainly is indie music. I am not sure why this is on the list. No need to listen to it or revisit any of the songs again.

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2

Don't love her voice, and a fairly boring album. Did have some catchy guitar bits.

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1

Thought I would like this, but couldn't finish it to be honest

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1

Grim

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1

I don't think she can sing, but she does so anyway. The lyrics are not good either. I don't ever want to hear it again.

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1

Fences. Total garbage. She can’t sing.

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1

Skipped it

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1

I only made it through half... It's like a teenage girl singing her inner monologue.

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1

Bland save for a few tracks. Very one note

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1

One of the worst things I've ever endured.

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1

wtf!!

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1

Her voice didn’t really sound good, so I couldn’t finish it.

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1

I don't like this album much at all.

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1

This record exhausted me. I remember the buzz after its release, hearing about how "revolutionary" it was. Was it? Is it? After all this time and a re-listen the remaster actually does give it a little more sheen (I'm very much not a low-fi fan)... the music is sometimes just "ok" (actually "Shatter" could or should be a great song) but sweet fancy moses there's no getting by her voice which is absolutely unmanageable and the up-front and dry mix (lo-fi!) does absolutely zero favours to. Was this album cool because of her "bold language?" Maybe. Ordinarily I'm all for it but not in and of itself - for the most part it's used in such a stupid high school back row of the class teenage-giggly way and as a result most of these songs just are a sloppy pile of absolutely nothing. If you get off on "pushing boundaries" in the sense that being edgy with sex and language in music is super important - or maybe all that's important - then go for it here. If you're of the theory that even if your lyrics have the effort of repeating a kindergarten nursery rhyme but you still need to put some effort and thought and creativity into actually freaking making art then you'll probably feel as I do after enduring this. This revolution should not have been televised and instead should have been exiled to the "do not release" pile. 2/10 1 star.

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1

Like Cheryl Crow but worse.

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1

bruh

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1

was not something I was into. Didn't sound good either. Just not for me.

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1

Un best of des musiques de fin de Buffy contre les vampires

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1

Nope

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feminist grunge mixed with stonesy blues. nice

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