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Either / Or

Elliott SmithAudio CD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (145 customer reviews)

Price: $14.01 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
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MP3 Music, 12 Songs, 2009 $6.49  
Audio CD, 1997 $14.01  
Vinyl, 1997 $23.99  

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Speed Trials 3:01$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Alameda 3:43$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Ballad Of Big Nothing 2:48$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Between the Bars 2:21$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Pictures Of Me 3:47$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. No Name No. 5 3:43$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Rose Parade 3:28$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Punch And Judy 2:25$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Angeles 2:56$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Cupids Trick 3:04$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. 2:45 AM 3:19$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. Say Yes 2:19$0.99  Buy MP3 

Amazon's Elliott Smith Store


Image of album by Elliott Smith


Image of Elliott Smith


Elliott Smith was born Steven Paul Smith in Omaha, Nebraska on August 6, 1969.

His father Gary Smith was in medical school at the University of Nebraska, and his mother Bunny was an elementary school teacher. When Elliott was one year old his parents divorced, and he moved with his mother to Dallas, Texas. That same year, his father was drafted, assigned to the U.S. Air Force, and sent ... Read more in Amazon's Elliott Smith Store

Visit Amazon's Elliott Smith Store
for 57 albums, 10 photos, and 5 full streaming songs.

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Frequently Bought Together

Either / Or + XO + Figure 8
Price for all three: $33.41

Some of these items ship sooner than the others.

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  • XO $9.77
  • Figure 8 $9.63

Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 25, 1997)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Kill Rock Stars
  • ASIN: B00000373U
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (145 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,954 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Heart sewn firmly to his sleeve, Elliott continues his tuneful dissection of life & what makes it difficult.

Blessed with the voice of a wispy angel, Elliott Smith creates sad little pop songs, which, like the work of Nick Drake (to whom he's been compared) threaten to disappear into the night air. Several of the tracks here were featured in Gus Van Zant's movie Good Will Hunting, and they're among the album's best (though "Miss Misery," nominated for an Academy Award is only available on the soundtrack album). "Angeles" and "Say Yes" are bittersweet laments that feature Smith's idiosyncratic guitar picking, which is well served by the album's decidedly low-fi production. --Rob O'Connor

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
82 of 90 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mr. Smith goes to... September 24, 2004
Format:Audio CD
As we're bearing down on the relase date for "From a basement on the Hill," I thought it might be time to put in my say concerning this, my favorite album from everyone's favorite Fool on the Hill...

Subtle chord changes, the occasional drums and backing instruments. If you prefer, as I do, stripped down Elliott (the KRS albums) to full on Beatles-orchestration-bandleader Elliott (the Dreamworks) then this is your album. It holds together more cohesively than his previous, self-titled release.

Be that as it may, I think Elliott never put out a perfect release. But his flaws are perfect in their way... Kinda like his buterfly wings voice, so apparently frail on the surface: haunting and fluttering- always on the verge of sounding like he was about to slip off-key... but he never did...

Truth be told- There's a couple of songs on this that I can't stand, skip 'em every time. But the ones that I love (Between the Bars, Alameda, Speed trials, Angeles, Pictures of me, 2:45, The morning after, and especially No Name #6) are all among not only my hands-down Elliott picks but are also some of my most favorite songs, period. 'Between the Bars' alone would be worth this, easily one of the most achingly soulful, sad, sad songs ever to take shape in the human soul.

This stands firmly poised on the precipice, intimating the tempestuous break from KRS and the switch to Dreamworks, right around all that Good Will Hunting madness... The answers may not be forthcoming on the why and how of Mr. Smith's demise. resign yourself to it. We can only guess at the inner workings of this guy- peering in through the windows he's left us. This is my favorite room, looking in.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Where Have I Been? March 2, 2000
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
I have to thank Spin magazine for my purchase of Elliot Smith's Either/Or. I saw the album located as one of the best albums of the 90s and decided to go purchase the album. SPIN WAS COMPLETELY WRONG. This album should have been way farther up than the rating it got. Where have I been? How come I had never heard of Elliot Smith before this? I love every song on this album. Beautiful melodies and flowing intelligent lyrics - Either/Or is one of the most haunting and elegant albums I have ever heard. Speed Trials is glorious and so is Alameda. Ballad of Big Nothing is without a doubt the highlight of the album. Between the Bars, Pictures of Me, No Name No.5, Rose Parade, Punch and Judy, Cupid's Trick, 2:45 AM - all GREAT songs. Say Yes and Angeles are other highlights. Elliot Smith has a ethereal voice and combined with his guitar- creates an experience that can only be heard. I haven't heard XO or his self-titled. But from some people I've talked to - they say XO or the self-titled is better. How can you top this? I can't wait to find out.
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53 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So Glad To Meet You, Angeles January 6, 2002
By Ben C-F
Format:Audio CD
Okay, here's the deal with Elliott Smith. There's nothing new to him. There's nothing he does, be it the Beatlesque melodies, the Arlo Guthrie fingerpicking, the Nick Drake lyrics melding anguish with cynicism-- there is nothing he does that hasn't been done before. That's not the point. Elliott Smith is not a living genius, nor is he destined to change the face of pop music as we know it (if anything, he's destined to remind us of how incredible it can be). But he is a damn good songwriter, and "either/or" is his best record.
Basically, this is a great album. It's not quite as downbeat as the previous "Elliott Smith;" while it gets pretty heavy there's nothing like "Needle In The Hay" to really depress you. Instead, Smith adopts sort of a sly sense of humor on some of his songs, particularly "Rose Parade," which when viewed in one light is absolutely hysterical. He also seems to be viewing love a little more on the bright side, in "Say Yes" (though even that has an unfortunate, but perfectly natural spin). The melodies are all very simple, usually repeated two-bar phrases before the chorus, but they're great melodies, showcasing Smith's delicate tenor, and also focusing attention to the lyrics (no small feat, especially when he practically whispers half his lines).
The best moments are when Smith lets his guard down a little, like "Between The Bars," or "Cupid's Trick." Other than the Penny Lane shuffle of "Pictures Of Me" and the mild stroll of "Ballad Of Big Nothing," the album is quite low-key. No big surprises, no gallant orchestras, just some great songs.
And all in all, this is one of my all-time favorite records.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must For Any Collection. November 20, 2001
Format:Audio CD
First, this album is a work of genius.
Second, here is why you should buy it. "Either/Or" is Elliot's 3rd solo release, following 3 albums and several EPs with the Portland indie/grunge band Heatmiser. I can't speak for "roman candle" or "Elliot Smith," but i can tell you about this album...which is one of the best i have ever heard.
As several other reviews said, this album has an ethereal, acoustic sound, best compared to Simon and Garfunkel or Nick Drake. The songs - short, but beautiful - are vintage Elliot, with moody, depressing lyrics generally about the girl who got away - and why it's his own fault. "Nobody broke your broke your own cuz you can't finish what you start," he chants over and over on "Alameda." Elliot utilizes both complex, Dylanesque lines along with simple, powerful phrases like the chorus of "Ballad of Big Nothing" to create truly moving songs...and if that's not enough, Elliot is a fine singer.
The highlight of many songs is the vocal melody, especially on the bright "Rose Parade." Elliot's trademarke guitar work is here, of course - his pick/strum chord-oriented songs comprise the bulk of the album. The music stands on it's own, yet creates a suberb backing for Elliot's singing and lyrics. This is one of his best albums, and i would consider it stronger than XO, which has been more universally acclaimed (even by this website!). A few standout tracks - of course, the songs from Good Will Hunting... "Ballad of Big Nothing" "Say Yes" and "Between the Bars." The entire album is great, however, with not a single weak track.
You should pick this one up - everyone should give "Either/Or" a chance, because someday it will stand as one of the finest albums produced during the 1990's...and maybe ever.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Love it
Published 1 month ago by KChapman
5.0 out of 5 stars XO
I've been a huge Elliott Smith fan for 15 years - for some reason never got anything on vinyl. Sounds great!
Published 4 months ago by Kaitlin
3.0 out of 5 stars such a sad artist
A very talented artist but I did not like the album, songs are too sad for me. I gave it away.
Published 7 months ago by Cathy M.
5.0 out of 5 stars Sweetness
This album takes me back to late 90s Portland. It's a lullaby like the rain. When you need some dirge-y sweetness, this is the stuff.
Published 8 months ago by Imma Lou
4.0 out of 5 stars Good stuff
I heard Between the Bars on the movie Stuck in Love and loved it. The rest of the album is growing on me. It's emo-licious.
Published 9 months ago by Melissa S
5.0 out of 5 stars LOVE IT!!
Came in the mail way before I thought it would. Sleeve was not damaged at all. Came with a digital downlad. Nice weight so it plays wonderfully with great detail. 10/10!!! Read more
Published 13 months ago by Katherine
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!
I know this album well and was more than pleased to find it for a reasonable price! It was exactly what I paid for and came sooner than I thought.
Published 17 months ago by Trever Smith
4.0 out of 5 stars Mournful Plus
Sad reflective songs that paint a bleak picture of life on the outside. Sparse recordings done with flair. Excellent folk.
Published 17 months ago by eeyoore
5.0 out of 5 stars Either/Or
Item arrived in perfect condition.

As for the album, its incredible. I have yet to hear an Elliott Smith album I didn't like, but Either/Or sticks out as one of his more... Read more
Published 19 months ago by anonymous
5.0 out of 5 stars I don't write many reviews, but...
If you're going to drive yourself to the airport early on a foggy morning, this is the cd to play.
Published 19 months ago by Karl Draney
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