By 1994, the opening of the radio airwaves to new and interesting bands that had sprung up in Nirvana's wake had already all but seized up into a steady trickle of neo-heshers playing the same angsty drivel. Therefore, when "I Am A Scientist" started showing up on the radio late that year, it sounded like the "Smells Like Teen Spirit" of lo-fi, the song that was poppy and catchy enough to kickstart not just Guided By Voices but Pavement, Liz Phair, Sebadoh and any number of other cool but culty bands into the musical mainstream. For better or worse, it didn't happen that way, but "I Am A Scientist" still sounds awfully fresh. So minimal and so simply recorded that you can actually hear the room's ambient noise click on just before Robert Pollard's vocal track starts, the song rides on a simple but elegant bassline, restrained drums and perfectly distorted guitars, no element taking precedence over the others. For a lo-fi song, it's awfully well-balanced and listenable, and it's one of the most mature and elegant melodies of the group's career.