On Hospital, former Pavement drummer Gary Young debuted his quirky style of minimalist folk music to a worldwide audience. On the first track, "Plant Man," Young exhibits a poppy acoustic guitar strum and a playful singing style. What follows is a roller coaster of chaotic and disjointed songs, from the repetitive singalong of "Foothill Blvd" to the sluggish and somber "Warren." The title track, "Hospital for the Chemically Insane," is a short and simplistic track, which is followed by the eccentric and jovial "Birds in Traffic." "Ralph the Vegetarian Robot" is easily the silliest track on the disc, displaying Young's enthusiastic and childish personality. His clean and lively cover of "Wipe Out" showcases his musicianship better than the rest of the disc. After the whimsical "Hooks of the Hiway," the disc ends with two unlisted bonus tracks, an alternate version of "Where Are You At" and a haunting and slowed-down version of "Foothill Blvd." As a whole, the disc is a chaotic and rambling collection of frantic songs from a man desperate to be known as more than the former drummer of one of the 1990s' most influential indie rock bands, Pavement. The disc was recorded at Louder Studios in Stockton, CA, in 1994.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Cramer