'90s Alt/indie/twee Bands I'm Listening to...again
@lenadunham mentions her new podcast has a theme song by That Dog which is one my all time favorite 90s alt bands (that most people haven't heard of). It sent me into spiral of 90s alt/indie/twee bands I hadn't listen in ages and that all reminded me of an earlier time, before I moved to San Francisco. Here's what on my playlist.
- 1.that dog. - Retreat from the Sun
- 2.The Magnetic Fields - HolidayI was vaguely obsessed with Stephin Merrit and pretty much everything he ever put out, up until (and including) 69 Love Songs. But this album made my last year of college all the more enjoyable.
- 3.Juliana Hatfield Three - Become What You AreJuliana Hatfield recently reformed the JH3 band and released a new album. It's a return to form though it doesn't hold the nostalgic power that their 1st album has for me. One listen of this album and all of sudden I'm a directionless GenX-er trying to figure out what to do when I graduate from college like Winona Ryder & Janeane Garofalo in Reality Bites.
- 4.Liz Phair - Exile from GuyvilleThe classic debut from Liz. I think she's kind of done releasing albums now and is just doing composing work for TV now. But I keep hoping she's do a comeback album or something. Fun fact, my friend Erin went to Oberlin college with her. They were on the same freshman dorm floor!
- 5.Lois - StrumpetI always wondered what happened to Lois. She stopped releasing music around 2000 (she did a one off album with Greg Moore under the name Owl & the Pussycat). The Internet has scant information on her but I still enjoy her twee jangly guitar work and sweet voice.
- 6.Velocity Girl - CopaceticJangly guitars and random shoegazing tendencies.
- 7.The Spinanes - StrandRebecca Gates' voice and guitar work backed with Scott Plouf's drums and their lack of bass player really felt stripped down and punchy to me. I was sad I never saw them live before they broke up, though I did see Rebecca perform a short solo show at an Urban Outfitters years later. It was good but not the same.
- 8.Liquorice - Listening CapThis is the 90s indie rock super group that no one has ever heard of. I has this CD on repeat for ages. Jenny Toomey of Tsunami, Dan Littleton of Ida and Trey Many of His Name is Alive. Released on 4AD, I went to a Jenny Toomey solo show once and asked her if she was planning on doing any more Liquorice music and she looked at me like I was crazy. "No, never doing that again and never working with 4AD again!" Never got the full story from her about that....
- 9.Lush - GalaA collection of their first 3 EPs. I was a huge Lush fan and was THRILLED to hear they had reunited and are touring. I hope they come to San Francisco. Fun fact: I met Miki at Lollapalooza and gushed to her that she was awesome. She then gently mocked me for using the word "awesome" something that she though Americans used too often. She was not wrong.
- 10.The Softies - It's LoveRose Melberg formed The Softies after her band Tiger Trap broke up. The name couldn't be more apt. Rose and her friend Jen Sbragia and their guitars. That's it. Rose recently released a new record with her new group Knife Pleats. Go get it!
- 11.Ida - Ten Small PacedI always get melancholic when I hear this album. They get lumped into the slowcore folk scene along with Low but there's a deeper poignancy in their music.
- 12.Low - The Curtain Hits the CastI came across the video for Over the Ocean on TV one day by accident and was MESMERIZED by it. Who and what was this band? Why had I never heard of them? I had to get the album immediately. I've never looked back.
- 13.Aimee Mann - WhateverHer first solo album post- 'Til Tuesday. I still listen to it now and then even when I'm not feeling all weirdly 90s inspired. She's one of the few singers that I have dragged my partner @AJ to see live and he liked. He actually will listen to her of his own free will!
- 14.The Breeders - Last SplashMy favorite Pixies song ever was Gigantic, so obviously I knew I would love The Breeders when they released and album. But Last Splash blew me away when it came out. After the original lineup reformed to tour for the 20th anniversary of Last Splash's released I've heard rumblings of new music. I hope so!
- 15.Throwing Muses - UniversityThe follow up to their post-Tanya Donelly leaving the band, Red Heaven, this album felt like a return to form. I remember being really excited about it, playing it at my college radio station and think Kristin Hersh was brilliant. Years later I went to a Tower Records show of her's when she was promoting a solo album and asked her to sign a Throwing Muses CD. And then I gave her giant sunflowers. She was very gracious to me but I'm sure she thought me a loon.