17 April 2020

17 April 2020 - Liz Phair - Polyester Bride

Girly Sound.

Those of you who are Liz Phair fan know approximately what Girly Sound is.  For those who don't, or only know about it casually, the Girly Sound tapes were early releases self-produced by Phair in the early 1990's - Girly Sound being her stage name at the time - that led directly to her record deal.  There were actually three of them - Yo Yo Buddy Yup Word To Ya Mutha, GIRLSGIRLSGIRLS, and Sooty.

I know what you're thinking (and no - it has nothing to do with how many shots I took).  "Why is he mentioning these lo-fi recordings when today's entry is clearly well produced?"  It's an excellent question, as this song was the opening single from Phair's third studio album whitechocolatespaceegg.  However, it was a rewrite/rerecording of a song from GIRLSGIRLSGIRLS.  So, all those years later, she was still using her Girly Sound stuff as a library.

whitechocolatespaceeg, unlike her previous work, came after she got married and had a kid - it wasn't just about sex, which Exile in Guyville and Whip-Smart clearly were.  So, this song, written in her overtly sexual era, was reimagined as a more introspective and less sexual piece.

Compare this version to the GIRLSGIRLSGIRLS version.  First of all, it's a lot longer - so budget some time.   It's also a slower, sparser and I think sadder song - and more self-deprecating.  And Henry, her bar-tending friend seems to be more of a dick.

Phair still tours, and was supposed to be opening for Alanis Morrisette and Garbage this year on their tour.  I hope that still happens, but until then, here's a live performance from 2018.

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