Last month Sarah McLachlan released a Greatest Hits album, but for me, it may be best just to pick up Surfacing and cherry pick a song or two like Possession off iTunes. The album was the pinnacle of her career that also coincided with the launch of the Lilith Fair and will also live on through history thanks to The Starr Report where it mentioned a note Monica Lewinski wrote to Bill Clinton mentioning one of the songs, Do What You Got to Do. I’m sure Sarah is proud of that accomplishment, although the song is conspicuously absent from the Greatest Hits package.
And why wouldn’t a chick have Surfacing on hand for any occasion during the late nineties. Surfacing was just one of those albums that just washes over you and somehow works for different occasions, relaxing, just hanging out, or hanging out with the special someone. And no one best encapsulates that then the simple piano ode of Angel, a heartbreaking song about loss but at the same time is very comforting. To a lesser extent, Adia also has that feel to it, albeit a little more upbeat.
The highlight of the album though starts off the album with Building a Mystery, a brilliantly crafted song there was nothing like it before or since. And I have absolutely no clue what the song or any of the lyrics actually mean (although I have been known to wear sandals in the snow), but I just love how Sarah delivers the line “You give us a tantrum.” But on the song and the rest of Surfacing, McLachlan’s voice somehow haunts and sooths at the same time making her one of the most uniquely beautiful voices in music history and is why the album is this month’s induction into the Scooter Hall of Fame.