Phair Signs To ATO, 'Guyville' Reissue Due
Liz Phair has signed a new record deal with ATO, the first fruit of which will be a reissue of her classic 1993 debut, "Exile in Guyville." Due June 24, the set includes four previously unreleased audLiz Phair has signed a new record deal with ATO, the first fruit of which will be a reissue of her classic 1993 debut, "Exile in Guyville."
Due June 24, the set includes four previously unreleased audio tracks and a DVD with a documentary about the album's genesis. A new Phair studio album, her first since 2005's Capitol swan song "Somebody's Miracle," is penciled in for the fall.
Fans will be most jazzed for the "Guyville" documentary "Guyville Redux" on the bonus DVD, which finds Phair interviewing Chicago music scene vets like producers Steve Albini and Brad Wood, her former Matador compadres Gerard Cosloy and Chris Lombardi, National Public Radio host Ira Glass and actor John Cusack.
As for the unreleased tracks, "Ant in Alaska" and "Wild Thing" originate from Phair's oft-bootlegged, pre-fame "Girly Sound" demos; the former was recorded under the name "Go On Ahead" on Phair's 1998 album "whitechocolatespaceegg." "Say You" is a full-band cut that hasn't seen the light of day, and an untitled solo instrumental rounds out the package.
After becoming an indie rock sensation with the release of "Guyville" and 1994's "Whip-Smart" on Matador, Phair signed with Capitol for "whitechocolatespaceegg." But her next two albums for the label turned her career in a more pop-driven direction, dividing fans and critics.
"I knew if I wanted promotional dollars, I would have to turn in something to get on radio," Phair told Billboard in 2003.
Her self-titled album that year sold relatively well (429,000 copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan) and generated two Adult Top 40 hits. But "Somebody's Miracle" fared much worse, having sold just 81,000 units to date.
At ATO, Phair joins a family of artists including Radiohead, My Morning Jacket and Underworld, as well as a team of executives who worked closely with her at Capitol.