By Chris Porter
She is hands-down, my favorite female performer (yes, men listen to her too…and we’re not pussies, so eat it), though I can’t properly explain why. I mean, there’s many a great women singers out there, but for some reason I always gravitated to McLachlan’s music. It might have a little to do with the fact that I find her irresistably hot – not in the innocent “oh, she’s pretty” way, but in the naughty “want to touch the hiney” way, although i’m not quite at stalker-level like she describes in “Possession”….yet (i’m looking at you, Mr. oh-i’m-so-cool-Sarah McLachlan’s husband!). Her angelic voice, coupled in harmony with the tranquil melodies provided by her band make this artist and Lillith Fair brainchild hard to forget, if you’ve ever heard her (and chances are, you have).
This Halifax-born artist has been into music since 4, but has acheived global recognition only within the last decade. Her early start consists of fronting a pop band called “October Game”, who was then opening for Moev. The folks in Moev were so impressed by her talent, that she was asked to front their band, although this never happened due to her tender age and career constraints. However, years later at 20, she composed her first album, “Touch”. This introspective beauty includes tracks such as “Ben’s Song” and “Vox”, and is a great freshman album from the then budding superstar. She followed up with“Solace” in 1991, which is a look at Sarah’s darker side, focusing on basic human greed in songs like“Black”, or breaking up from a long relationship in “Path of Thorns”. I think from listening to this album, I got a better sense of appreciation for the direction her music was taking in regards to more recent recordings. Her 1994 release, “Fumbling Towards Ecstacy” is a personal favorite of mine, since it was my first exposure to her.
I heard tracks from “FTE” on the radio, became an instant fan, and immediately sought out more of her music. I don’t go gaga like that over many songs I hear over the radio, so I knew that she was something special, and immediately bought this album. To me, if Sarah were at her most angelic on just one recording, It would be this one, since it was my first exposure. It was so passionate – I had so much sex with this cd playing in the background, it was as if i’d discovered a female Al Green or something.
“FTE” brought Sarah her first taste of stardom, with the record going platinum shortly after release, and gaining her a stronger fan base via outlets such as MTV and mainstream radio play. But that was just the beginning of her rise to the top her game. She released “The Freedom Sessions” in 1995. A live album of the “FTE” tour, this CD is a must-have for any fan. For a dollar more, a interactive CD-ROM version (Track 1) of the release is available for PC users. Another collector for true fans is her ’96 release of “B-sides, Rarities, and Other Stuff”, for obvious reasons. Her biggest success to date (other than Lilith Fair), is her multi-platinum “Surfacing”. The album soared to #2 on Billboard’s top 200, and got her worldwide notoriety with hits like “Adia” and “Building a Mystery”. She has also released a live album and DVD of the Surfacing tour called “Mirrorball”, which I highly recommend. Be sure to check out her official site here.