Forgotten Songs of the ‘90s: Jawbox
This is going to be a bit different for two reasons; 1. The song is a cover and 2. It’s a hidden track. When Jawbox released their self-titled final album in 1996, they chose to close it with a cover of Tori Amos’ “Cornflake Girl” from 1994. Now knowing that the media would jump all over the song, they buried it at the very end of the song “Absenter.” But because the song was so strong, it became one of the few hidden tracks to ever be made into a single/video, but listening to the song, it’s easy to understand why.
Starting up with their signature wall of feedback, the band kicks into the familiar melody of the song about three minutes after the end of “Absenter” and once you hear the melody, you know you’re gonna hear something different. Instead of Amos’ lilting voice, J. Robbins’ tuff snarl comes in and adds a whole new dimension to the song. With the band delivering a heavier backbeat, the song really becomes harder and meatier and with a new level of intensity behind it.
Once the band kicks into the chorus and the refrain of “where you’d put the key down,” Jawbox has clearly made the song their own and over the years, many people, including myself, have looked at their version as the definitive version of the track, completely obliterating Amos’ light pop version. Unfortunately despite the notoriety the band gained as a result of the track, it didn’t become a massive hit single and added to it inter-band fighting, they decided to disband at the end of 1997. But the song still lives on.