Autoclave, "Bulls Eye"
Before Mary Timony formed the brilliant Helium (and Wild Flag and Ex Hex!), she was in Autoclave, who put out a couple of EPs for Dischord Records which were later collected on a single comp. It's an interesting piece of history, and for Timony fans, I do think it's worth picking up, but it's not on the same level as her later work. It IS extremely early 90s Dischord, though.
The Black Keys, "Oceans & Streams"
Before they became arena rock staples, they were an indie blues rock band that played in the same kind of stripped-down, minimalist place as the White Stripes. However, with Attack & Release, the Black Keys really started to open up their sound, converging gradually towards the crowd pleasing stuff of their later records.
Lambchop, "The Book I Haven't Read"
Nixon had Lambchop's ensemble swelling to the point where Kurt Wagner's arrangements could get ridiculously lush. And he used those capabilities extremely well, demonstrating the songwriting that would fuel their long run of great albums. The pre-Nixon material is also excellent, but this album is sort of where Lambchop really became Lambchop.
John Coltrane, "Blue Train (Alternate Take)"
Like everybody who is an expert on jazz, which I obviously am (just look at my track record!), I only listen to alternate takes of things. In fact, sometimes, I just skip all takes! That's me, a jazz knower!
Snail Mail, "Golden Dream"
This record showed up on a fair number of best-of lists in 2018, and I picked it up on that basis. It does actually have a little bit of Mary Timony feel to it, and it turns out that Timony actually taught guitar to Lindsey Jordan! Small world!