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Slanted And Enchanted CD

4.5 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Frequently Bought Together

  • Slanted And Enchanted
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  • Crooked Rain Crooked Rain [Special Edition]
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Total price: £25.16
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Product details

  • Audio CD (9 Nov. 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Domino Records
  • ASIN: B002R9Q9F2
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 69,356 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Summer Babe (Winter Version)
  2. Trigger Cut/Wounded-Kite at :17
  3. No Life Singed Her
  4. In the Mouth a Desert
  5. Conduit for Sale
  6. Zurich Is Stained
  7. Chesley's Little Wrists
  8. Loretta's Scars
  9. Here
  10. Two States
  11. Perfume-V
  12. Fame Throwa
  13. Jackals, False Grails: The Lonesome Era
  14. Our Singer

Product Description

BBC Review

In terms of iconic alt-rock anthems, Pavement’s debut album simply can’t compete with 1994’s Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain or 1997’s Brighten the Corners. And if you want to listen to Stephen Malkmus’ band at their most head-scratchingly odd, you need to head to 1995’s wilfully strange Wowee Zowee or early EPs collection Westing (By Musket and Sextant). Yet if Slanted and Enchanted falls somewhere between Pavement the almost-but-not-quite mainstream band and Pavement the noisy oddballs, then that’s something that very much works in its favour. It feels reductive to call this the band’s ‘best’ album when their other records were of such quality. But it’s the Pavement record with the most heart and charm, their most rounded and pretty set.

This is not to say it’s a smooth ride: the production values are notoriously low/non-existent on a record whose success did much to establish lo-fi as an accepted musical aesthetic. And the band’s indebtedness to The Fall was never more apparent than on guitarist Scott ‘Spiral Stairs’ Kannberg’s raucous Two States.

But from the bumpy dream-pop of album opener Summer Babe (Winter Version), through to the rueful tone poem standout Here (one of Malkmus’ finest lyrics) and on via countless other tracks where a chorus or hook of heart-stopping plaintiveness bursts from the morass of scratchy riffs and wonky drums to casually harpoon your heart, Slanted and Enchanted is a consistently lovely, fresh-sounding record. In many ways its sonic roughness has preserved it from time: production values are never going to date on a record that had no production values in the first place, and the layers of discordant sound serve give it a certain mystique, with every snatch of melody and earworm chorus remaining delightfully unexpected. Rarely has such winsome music been forged from such rough materials.

The album was reissued in expanded form in 2002 as the Luxe & Reduxe edition; the remaster work does little more than up the volume, but a second CD featuring follow-up EP Watery, Domestic and a live set from the Brixton Academy in late 1992 is worthwhile.

--Andrzej Lukowski

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Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

By Keith M TOP 500 REVIEWER on 6 Feb. 2014
Format: Audio CD
Pavement’s 1992 debut album remains a remarkable record – establishing the band’s trademark mix of complex rhythms, anarchic tempos and sublime melodies and all shot through with Stephen Malkmus’ witty, erudite and (frequently) cynical lyrics. And although (arguably) the songs here are not quite as strong (or indeed commercial) as on 1994’s follow-up Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain, Slanted And Enchanted provided a ground-breaking debut which fused a whole range of influences, including from the existing 'grunge’ scene, along with earlier punk bands (notably The Fall), to produce a new, distinctive sound that was to prove highly influential in its own right.

Although Malkmus certainly set up his lyrics here to maintain their ever-present indecipherability (although the general tenor can often be discerned or, at least, guessed at), the band established a distinctive set of beats and rhythms that would characterise much of their later material. Opener Summer Babe is just that, one of the most impressive songs here, a tale of 'ironic love’ to pulsating beat and Malkmus’ guitar doing an ‘animated Lou Reed’. Thereafter, this 'beat’ (often with overlaid chainsaw guitars) and subject matter recurs, on the brilliant Trigger Cut (with a typical Malmus warbling melody), In The Mouth A Desert (great guitar part here), Loretta’s Scars and (what might well be a cynical take on religion) Jackals, False Grails.

Of course, the band’s obvious debt to Mark Smith’s The Fall has been much talked about and this is evident on Malkmus’ vocal diatribe against the perils of corporatism in the lyrical (and rhythmical) masterpiece that is Conduit For Sale!
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Format: Audio CD
Yes its messy, yes the recording sloppy and yes the songs are all twisted up - but its all simply genius.

The scruffy, messy sound just makes the interweaving melodies and cryptic lyrics all the more interesting.

Melodic, subdued, contemplative, exciting, crazy and simply sublime in places - this truly is a classic of the genre. 'Here' isnt the usual fayre for a debut album and 'Zurich is stained' is far too mid tempo and restrained for a fledgling rock band.

I never really appreciated the huge influence Pavement had on popular post grunge rock and indie music until I listened to the tribute compilation "Everything's ending here" (which is a truly awesome listen - even if your not a Pavement fan).

After listening to bands like Beulah you can see how it is infected the fabric of modern indie rock.

This album isn't for everyone - particularly if you like well produced, clear, crisp and clean music - but anyone with an ear for a hook and that lo-fi aesthetic it is a must have along with Guided by Voices Bee Thousand.
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Pavement's approach in song crafting is certainly slanted, and I am somewhat enchanted by listening to this album. Nevertheless the fragmentary nature of the songs -wherein melodies seem to float in thin air before quickly dissipating into nothingness; and left field guitar lines which momentarily grab hold of you, before swiftly blending back in the sonic pot- does not lend itself to being impressed in my mind. Essentially although every time I listen to the album I am thrilled by most of the songs, afterwards only a couple manage to raise themselves, and to hover above the general level of sonic murkiness that pervades the record. Thereby a concomitant feeling of listlessness, and inanition, but also of abnegation of an all-out melodic attack in lieu of a circuitous approach, accompanies each and every of my listens of this album.

Yet songs like "Here", or "Loretta's Scars" are complete, and fine creations, which makes it obvious that the band purposefully adhered to crafting fragmentary songs: an interesting decision to say the least.

Overall "Slanted and Enchanted" is an interesting record, with an idiosyncratic sound; a record which I recommend.
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