Category: Aimee Mann

Aimee Mann – I’m with Stupid

ARTIST: Aimee Mann              Aimee_Mann_-_I'm_With_Stupid

TITLE:  I’m with Stupid

YEAR RELEASED: 1995

CHART ACTION: #82 US, #51 UK

SINGLES: That’s Just What You Are (#93 US, #24 US Modern Rock), Choice in the Matter, Long Shot (UK #126), You Could Make a Killing, Amateur, Superball

OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: That’s almost half of the record

LINEUP: Aimee Mann, Jon Brion and a lot of session guys and guests like Glenn Tillbrook, Chris Difford, Neil Innes, Juliana Hatfield and Michael Penn

WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Another collection of somewhat biting songs that rock a bit more this time than her earlier work.

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Aimee Mann and producer Jon Brion loaded up this album with a lot of guests and session players, getting certain guitar sound and voices for each track. The result is a more rocking collection that’s still song-driven.

Mann’s distinctive voice can get lost with a lot of instruments, but she’s mixed well and doesn’t get obscured. Her melodies are catchy, and the guitars have some grit and heft to them circa 1995.

Mann’s solo career stalled for a while after this release, for no good reason until she was approached to do the soundtrack to Magnolia.. This is a quality album where most all the songs are memorable.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: Difford and Tillbrook not only sang backup, but allowed Mann to steal a lick from “Up the Junction’ for one song.

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: No

GRADE: A-: Many critics didn’t like this that much, I humbly disagree. I think it’s a good to great album that’s well produced.

Aimee Mann – Whatever

ARTIST: Aimee Mann  Aimee_Mann_-_Whatever
TITLE: Whatever
YEAR RELEASED: 1993
CHART ACTION: #127 US, #39 UK
SINGLES: I Should’ve Known (#45 UK), Stupid Thing (#47 UK), Say Anything
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: 4th of July.
LINEUP: Aimee Mann, Jon Brion, Buddy Judge, Todd Nelson, Jim Keltner, Michael Hausman, Milt Sutton, session horns and strings
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Debut solo record leaves the ghosts of ‘Til Tuesday way behind and makes adult music that’s pleasing and personal.

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Aimee Mann’s journey from ‘Til Tuesday to a solo career meant moving away from pop and new wave and more towards an adult sound based on introspection and personal stories.

This debut shows a side that one wouldn’t expect from a former few-hit wonder. There was always an introspective side to ‘Til Tuesday, but now Mann seemed free to express herself without the pressure of getting a hit single with a hit sound. The result was a relaxed and mature record – one that shows an ear for melody yet also shows a gift form complexity in arrangements and lyrics.

Many of the songs on this album stay without for a while. They’re haunting and memorable. It’s a great and unexpected solo debut.

NOTES & MINUTAIE: Mann sang on “Time Stands Still” by Rush

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: Yes, in Germany there’s a bonus disc.

GRADE: A-: I don’t have many complaints about this at all – it’s a long way from “Love in a Vacuum”