For some reason, I started this week thinking about Liz Phair. I wasn’t obsessively dwelling on the indie-rock icon or anything like that. It was more of a case that she just sort of popped up in front of me, and it brought back fond thoughts of her old records. I remember her debut, Exile in Guyville, hitting college radio and the broader music press like a battering ram, and tracks from her sophomore release, Whip-Smart, serving as welcome relief as I trudged through the bushy wilds of the playlists handed to me as as DJ at a “new rock alternative” commercial radio station in the mid–nineteen-nineties. A couple years after that, I told anyone who’d listen, and more than a few who gave no indication they were interested or engaged in listening, that Phair’s third album, whitechocolatespaceegg, was her best record yet and tops of the calendar cycle in which it was released.
As if my nostalgia could mystically conjure music into being, Phair released a new single this week and announced a forthcoming studio album, her first in more than a decade. The track is vintage Phair, albeit with a sheen of modern studio polish. I guess I’m going into the weekend still thinking about Phair.