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It’s also her biggest seller, becoming the first album in Matador’s history to crack the Billboard top ten.-hooker praise for doin’ it doggie-style: “That way we can fuck and watch TV.” Forgiving “Explain it to Me,” Phair was in many ways a coy tease, partying and watching porn with guys she’d never date, however they lusted after her.Chan Marshall was never so much fun, never crude or masculine; she’s the opposite fantasy, the porcelain art-school doll whose confusion you never understood.
Marshall scribbles a Crayola daydream of the phony-tough cock rock that ruled the radios of her youth, as more attuned, sensitive kids felt their way in the dark.
“I Don’t Blame You” is one of them, a third-person apology to self — the sort of thing addicts and those new to therapy compose on admission — that’s more obviously an obituary for Kurt Cobain.
In either case, she uses the opening slot as a disconnected salvo, a statement of intent.
It’s the only song on to risk disaster, openly toying with Casio keys and a guitar line pinched from the Talking Heads’ tongue-in-cheek “Wild Wild Life.”The Cat Power we’ve come to know, love, and predict finally delivers her glistening treble rasp on “Good Woman,” a devastating ballad backed by a compressed chorus of pre-teen echoes, and the record’s major selling point, Dirty Three’s Warren Ellis.
Contrary to rumors, Eddie Vedder’s presence on is both appropriate and gentle, given his unmistakable coo.
Beyond nominally decrying the Quixotic male drive that fuels her oeuvre, “He War” underscores how remarkable Marshall’s voice is, turning an otherwise pedestrian, technically amateur tune into an assured rock anthem draped in arresting, shrill wails.