Wednesday, January 14, 2009


For a while, I wasn't sure how I felt about Aimee Mann's @#%&*! Smilers. That's just because I love some of her albums so much - the Magnolia soundtrack/Bachelor No. 2 and Lost In Space are among my favorite records ever. I also love Whatever and I'm With Stupid. And I liked her last one, The Forgotten Arm. She actually has quite an intimidating catalog, which is fitting, because she's actually a bit intimidating, in that she has suffered so many fools throughout her career, you can just tell that she doesn't suffer fools lightly anymore, and nor should she.

Anyway, Smilers took me a while, but now I love it. "Freeway" is for sure one of her best songs ever. And who can't relate to something like "Thirty-one Today." So, it is among my favorite albums of the year, even though I didn't love the tour. Still, I always look forward to hearing what she'll do next: I hope she welcomes the electric guitar back into her life, after casting it out for this album and tour.

On a more personal level, this album has a special place for me, because it is sort of what I bonded with Larry Flick over - he was interviewing Aimee for OutQ and I interviewed her afterwards for That's when Larry and I became friends, and that led to me being a weekly contributor to his OutQ radio show, a pleasure and an honor.

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