A recent post over at Good Readings (the new blog of Ryan Williams, a Grinnellian once removed) mentions the 15th anniversary of Liz Phair’s album “Exile in Guyville” — an album containing such classics as “Divorce Song” and “Fuck and Run.” Ryan links to an article by former Sleater-Kinney rocker Carrie Brownstein describing the album’s influence on her when she first heard it in 1993. He then goes on to describe his own relationship to the same album, one whose adult themes were enjoyed clandestinely “alone in my bedroom with my headphones on, listening with a uniquely teenage intensity of focus and emotional engagement.”
Is there anyone among us who cannot sympathize with that statement? Each of us could identify a few sentinel albums in our lives: those calling out to us clearly with their music, vocals or lyrics and which, despite the onward march of time, soldier on inside our heads and hearts and on our playlists.
So fellow geeks, which albums have shaped you (your world view, your understanding of music) significantly? Please also share which song you believe to be the most underrated on the album — never a hit, rather the kind of gem you discover only by purchasing the whole disc and (perhaps warm up to) listening to it incessantly.
-posted by poetloverrebelspy