The independent rock distribution network of the late '80s and early '90s heavily favored alternative rock with an attitude. An unfortunate side effect of this was that quirky singer/songwriters such as Hal Shows -- not especially commercial, but not especially alternative-minded or experimental either -- could get lost in the shuffle. Shows, formerly of the extremely obscure Persian Gulf (who had a couple of releases in the 1980s), recalled British singer/songwriters like Elvis Costello and (more strongly) Ray Davies on his 1989 LP, Birthday Suit. Shows (who is American) was best at acoustic folk-rock with a narrative flavor, sounding worn without sounding sorry for himself. Nobody noticed this unassuming effort and Shows got no further, but it's worth picking up a cheap used copy (and he remains so unknown that any used copy you find will surely be priced cheap).
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