Teenage Fanclub - Bandwagonesque
I forgot how much I love this one! I usually only play it winter. It sounds good right now, though.
Here's a self-indulgent review I wrote:
Dozens of scenesters soiled their pyjamas when Spin magazine picked this as 1991's number one album. Seems albums like Nevermind and Loveless caught the critics by surprise when they began bubbling up to the surface and then overtaking Bandwagonesque like ecological disasters in scope. Admittedly, Bandwagonesque wasn't the kind of album to spawn legions of noise-addicted blissheads or sell loads of flannel shirts to disaffected adolescents. But on Bandwagonesque, Teenage Fanclub nevertheless produced 10 (out of the 12) catchiest, craftiest songs of 1991. Whether the critics were right or wrong, well, "Big deal," as the members of Teenage Fanclub themselves might respond, to quote "Star Sign" from this album: "If these songs all change your day, big deal. Seen it all before... Given time, these things will change."
Nothing here's dazzingly original but that doesn't matter when you can make classic chord changes sound this easy and good. You'll not find anything else as swoony as "Pet Rock," "Sidewinder," or "Alcoholiday," no matter how hard you try. For variety, "Star Sign" sounds like the Byrds playing Ride (or vice versa). "Metal Baby" feels like a scruffier T. Rex song, and "The Concept" launches the album with some of the funniest lyrics on disc or vinyl, including, "She wears denim wherever she goes/Gonna buy some records by Status Quo." There's an homage to Sonic Youth, with "Satan," all guitar noise and mad-bull bass in an all-too-short Daydream Nation soundscape.
Half the time, these guys sound like they can barely pull it off--no, that's not quite right, because they can and do pull it off with amazing musicianship. It's that they sound like they could not care less if they did or not, but they go ahead regardless, and do so with endearing slacker grace. If they could have spawned any musical movement, Teenage Fanclub could have been one for the non-generation of slackers--that is, if they cared to. Because even when Jesus is knocking on your door, in "Guiding Star," and all you can muster is that you "kinda like the way he wears his hair... kinda like the way he walks on air," there doesn't seem to be too much to get too excited or concerned about.
So relax, don't worry if this is or was number one on anyone's list but your own, and feast your dadblasted ears on this contagious shaggy whiteboy college radio pop.