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The Shins - Oh, Inverted World (LP)


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Label: Sub Pop – SP 550
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album
Country: US
Released: Jun 18, 2002
Genre: Rock
Style: Indie Rock, Pop Rock

Oh, Inverted World is the debut studio album by American indie rock band The Shins, released on June 19, 2001 to critical acclaim. Omnibus Records put out an initial run of vinyl distributed by Darla. Sub Pop Records reprinted the vinyl, but the Sub Pop logo only appears on later pressings.

The album contains the songs "Caring Is Creepy" and "New Slang", both of which appeared in the 2004 film Garden State.

The album was released several months after its lead single, "New Slang", had debuted. The song garnered substantial critical acclaim to the point where label Sub Pop gave the band a record deal. The album was thus seen as one of the most anticipated indie releases of 2001. Some of the songs on the album existed in an embryonic form back when front man James Mercer was a member of another older band named Flake Music. The aforementioned band was based more in straight-ahead 90's alternative rock like Superchunk, whereas these nascent Oh, Inverted World songs were more inspired by Elephant 6 bands and oldies radio. This mismatch led to Mercer forming The Shins, in which he could explore this divergent sound.

The song "Know Your Onion!" was based on a saying of Mercer's mother, who would say the idiosyncratic phrase "know your onion!" which referred to having discipline in order to do a job well, with Mercer giving an example by saying "you really gotta know your onion to, I don't know, be an electrician or something." Mercer had said that the song's lyrics are about "getting your shit together and figuring out who are. You know, after high school and all the stupidness of that."

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