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Single Review: Liz Phair “Everything To Me”

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Liz Phair grapples with her boyfriend’s insensivity in the wavering “Everything To Me.”

A wistful guitar opens the single, leading into Phair’s shattered vocals. She’s blunt with him and does not sugarcoat the situation. She sees him blow off her attempts to deal with their problems. He doesn’t care about anything she has done in the relationship.

“I bet it makes you laugh/Watching me work so hard to reach you/You never gave a damn/About all of those things I did to please you.”

In the pre-chorus, she tells him that she knows he cheated on her. He’s concerned about no one but himself.

“All that you wanted, you found somewhere else/And nothing could drag you away from yourself.”

She asks in the chorus if he actually took the time to listen to her or pay attention to her habits. She wonders if he still love her if she lost her job. He’s an idea and not much more. Although he says he will think about what he says, he doesn’t. She’s curious if he will ever truly open up to her.

“Do you really know me at all?/Would you take the time to catch me if I fall?/Are you ever gonna be that real to me?/Everything to me.”

She has some perceptive in the second verse. Dating him is not the worst thing that’s happened to her. However, it’s what gives her hope that the relationship will change and maybe evolve. She believes there is something worth loving in her boyfriend.

“Lucky I’ve been through hell/Backroads and shortcuts I know them well/Baby just stick with me/We’ll make it together, just wait and see.”

Underneath a sea of strings and a brittle guitar, Phair realizes he’s shut her out yet again. The little hope she had left is destroyed. She’s disappointed yet can’t believe his callousness. The house they are living in may as well be empty.

“The walls they close in/The air it goes out/We’re left with nothing but a shadow of doubt/Nobody talks, no one is here/It’s just you and me.”

The chorus is sung twice.

At the end, she repeats the first two lyrics of the single.

“I bet it makes you laugh/Watching me work so hard to reach you.”

Liz Phair redeems herself after the atrocious singles off her self-titled album. It seems as though she is beginning to reconcile Indie Liz and Pop Liz. While the single’s music arrangement is a bit familiar, Phair is able to make up for it with her vocals. Detached and forlorn, she is able to give the song depth. By the end, she has become bitter, changing the first verse’s original forward tone. It’s not “Whip-Smart” good, but it’s a sign that Indie Liz is still in there and fighting to get out.

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About Pam Avoledo

  • http://www.suddennothing.net LegendaryMonkey

    I’ve always loved her voice and her lyrics, but the last few things I’ve heard from her have NOT been my cup of tea. I may have to check this one out, though… thanks!

  • http://www.lizphair.forumsunlimited.com JeremyEngle

    Whoa, Nelly!

    I can’t believe that of all things, anyone out there would hear THIS song as evidence that “Indie Liz is still in there and fighting to get out.”