387. Juliana Hatfield – “Hey Babe”

Now, this is a blast from the past.

For 10 minutes back in the early 1990s, Julian Hatfield was the ‘it girl’ of the indie scene, the female counterpoint to the rise of Evan Dando.

This, her first solo effort, certainly captures the sound and vibe of that period perfectly.  Her fragile vocals (but with a clear pop bent) compete (successfully) with jangly guitars (a lot of them from Dando) and medium-paced rhythms.

Her lyrics feel like they’ve been penned by some Ethan Hawke/Winona Ryder character (and the cover art could indeed be Ms.Ryder).  There’s that self-conscious/self-loathing vibe that all sensitive slackers aimed for.

There’s nothing outrageously path-breaking on here.  I suspect if you handed this to the ‘youth of today’ they’d shrug their shoulders and tweet back that they don’t get it.

But for me it recalls a simpler time when these little songs sounded like they were expositions of a tender soul.  The pairing of Ugly and Everybody Loves Me But You showcase an insecure young woman, while Nirvana is the classic tortured rockout for jumping around your bedroom.

I See You is also a cute homage to the brave men and women of ER (ICU… get it??):

File under: You probably needed to be there


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