Back in May 2006, I did a post that was 101 tracks - classic tracks - that don't get played endlessly on the radio, MTV, and the like, but in my mind should do.
Anyway, I decided it was about time for another list, so I give you Scott's Guide to 99 albums you should own by female artists/fronted bands. I have allowed only one album per artist/band, so there could be 99 new people to add to your collection.
Anyway here is part one. 1-10
Curve – Doppelgänger.
Long before Garbage there was Curve. The pairing of Dean Garcia and Toni Holiday were an indie boy dream, and I must admit I had a major crush on Toni Halliday around the time this album came out. Later outings never really matched the quality and consistency of the material on this debut record.
Download: Fait Accompli
PJ Harvey – Dry.
Could almost be called Raw. This was my introduction – via John Peel – to Polly Harvey, and I loved its stripped down sound and the pain, anger and simplicity of it.
Download: Sheela-na-gig / Oh my Lover
Nanci Griffith – Little Love Affairs.
Nanci is a bit of a pixie, and has been accused of writing mills and boon style country music. I think this is unfair and this album was a great showcase of her songwriting skills. Songs about how love often doesn't work out, but that optimism remains.
Download: I Wish it Would Rain / Outbound Plane
Lucinda Williams – Essence
If you haven't fallen in love with this album after the way Lucinda says 'baby, sweet baby' on the title track, you obviously have no musical taste. A great song writer with a voice like she gargles with sandpaper.
Download: Essence / Out of Touch
Scandal featuring Patty Smyth – Warrior.
Mrs McEnroe used to know how to rock – in fact Eddie Van halen once approached her with the serious proposition of her becoming lead singer for VH after Diamond Dave left. Anyway, this remains one of the best pop/rock albums of the 80s.
Downlaod: Warrior / Hands Tied
Carole King – Tapestry.
One of very few 'classic' albums that really deserve the title. Listening to it is like listening to a greatest hits album. All killer, no filler. Download: All of it.
The Swimming Pool Q's - The Swimming Pool Q's.
This band should have been much bigger. Their first album was doing musically what the Pixies then did and got lauded for (check out Big Fat Tractor off debut album 'The Deep End') , and this second album embraced the sound REM would eventually take global. Meloday Maker said the album contained ' "Some of the most compelling rock sounds in all of America.' Didn't help the sales. But don't let that put you off. If you can get hold of this record you'll see Jeff Calder and Anne Richmond Boston wrote some fine stuff on this record.
Download: Some New Highway / The Bell Rings
Ruby – Salt Peter
Ruby consisted of singer Lesley Rankine (who had previously been fronting hard rock band Silverfish) and producer Mark Walk (ex-Pigface). The album took Rankine's vocal power, added in some trip-hop beats (it was in thing at the time) and came up with a surprisingly durable record.
Download: Paraffin / Hoops
'Til Tuesday – Everything's Different Now
Before Aimee Mann went solo she spent a number of years fronting 'Til Tuesday. EDN was their final and probably best album and lyrically much of it was influence by the end of her relationship with Jules Shear (who co-wrote the title track with Matthew Sweet), and who gets his own song 'J for Jules'. Elswhere one Declan McManus makes an appearance on a song that still occasionally makes an appearance in Mann's live set.
Download: Other End of the Telescope / RIP in Heaven
Liz Phair – Exile in Guyville.
I was half tempted to choice her eponymous 'major label pop album (sorry, but I really like it), but Exile has always been to album closest to my heart. Very lo-fi and I really do never tire of hearing 'Never Said'. Also it was re-issued last year, so you have no excuse for not owning it.
Download : Never Said / Fuck & Run