Liz Phair mashes lo-fi and pop at the Center

JACKSON HOLE, WYO – What’s considered indie rock these days is three pedal boards away from the bold, lo-fi production of Liz Phair’s debut 1993 album, Exile in Guyville. Her early, unpolished sound turned the heads of alt-rockers across the spectrum before venturing into more of a commercial sphere of pop production. Grammy-nominated Phair will perform with her band this Thursday at the Center Theater.

Phair has not toured much in the past few years, concentrating on television scoring and a new book, Horror Stories. And though her last album release was Funstyle [2010], she had reportedly recorded a double album with Ryan Adams in 2017 before the recent media fallout of Adams’ abuse allegations. Energized from her recent touring, Phair has been in the studio recently with her touring band.

“It’s really important to get back in front of your audience,” Phair told Junkee last month acknowledging the significant link between touring and songwriting.

Fans can expect a bridge of Phair’s material—unabashed alt-rock, lo-fi acoustic, and sheeny pop. The latter has influenced scores of artists over the years, especially American female rockers that aren’t intimidated by mainstream expectations. Growing up in the Chicago suburbs before graduating college in Ohio and a short stint in San Francisco, she eventually returned to Chicago where she became friends with alt-rock band Urge Overkill and began her recording career.

Experimental acoustic rock band Califone—which formed out of Chicago-based blues-rock band Red Red meat—will open the show.

The Center Presents Liz Phair with special guest Califone at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Center Theatre. $52-$62. JHCenterForTheArts.org.

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