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4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Slanted And Enchanted
Format: MP3 Download|Change

on 30 March 2000
I'm a believer. I believe that a song can serve the ineffable, inedible mushroom (slanted and enchanted, why not?). I believe in a voice that squeaks for a generation of fragile and pissed-off flaneurs. I believe in cheap, scuzzy, squiggly guitars zipping around like pollocky streaks of strop. I believe in false starts (cf. 'Loretta's Scars'). I believe in the falsetto gibberish of a melodic bonbon: all those lovely woo-woo-woos ('In The Mouth A Desert') and sha-la-la-las ('Trigger Cut'). I believe in snazzy tunes that grow on you after the third (or fourth, or fifth) listen. But I also believe in a certain amount of deranged howling (cf. 'Conduit For Sale', and the neurotic 'Chesley's Little Wrists'). I believe in titles that have (seemingly) nothing to do with the songs they're appended to. I believe in dippy, fleshwound lyrics that make more sense than senescence. I believe in the lackadaisical (at least as an idea). I believe in the effortless, induplicate coil of fiddle-faddle. I believe in drummers who are more interested in standing on their heads and serving french toast to their fans than snapping their snares (cf. Gary Young). I believe in combining West Coast serenity with East Coast sarcasm: 'I'm the only one who laughs/At your jokes when they are so bad/And your jokes are always bad...' I believe in the soul as part of the whole megillah, off the cuff, but swift as a kissing bug: 'I've got one-only life to live/I've got one-only life to give.' I believe in beginnings that that are also endings and vice-versa ('Everything's ending here', sings Malkmus on the ninth track, when in fact, if rumours are to be believed, three albums later, everything's ending here. Wherever that is. ) I believe in cool Italians. Not cool as in de rigueur Rigid-Cool (all Armani shades and slicked back pubes), but cool as in Claudio Galuzzi Cool, my first Musical Guru, who in 1992 who sold me this album from his little shop in Casalpusterlengo saying it would 'shake my cack, kedgeree constellations' (you lose something in translation). And it did. It made me a believer.
Believe me.
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on 4 February 2000
Pavement's first widely available release after a bunch of singles, this was one of earliest examples of what's called 'lo-fi' - a band record with more enthusiasm and attitude than lush production values.
This is an album that grabs you from the first listen, but requires repeat playing if you want to make sense of it - my first impression was a few nice tunes interspersed with a some shouty bits, but it took on greater value the more I played it.
the album opens with two skewed pop songs - Summer Babe and Trigger Cut and then it's a bit punkier as Stephen Malkmus shouts his way through No Life Singed Her and Conduit For Sale! (ah, the titles!). Are they just American Fall-copyists? Well no, because then the perfect Zurich Is Stained ('and it's not my fault') follows and all is right with the world for 100 seconds.
As a whole the album becomes more cohesive with every listen - a bit shouty, a bit shambolic, sure, but Pavement are also capable of great things as the breathtakingly sad and wonderful Here shows.
Everybody who's into American Indie should own this - it was as much a renaissance album that tired genre as Nevermind was for American Rock.
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on 10 January 2014
This album still sounds as fresh as the dayi first heard it back in '92. To my mind this is the definitive Pavement album.
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on 5 December 2013
Loved this from the first time I heard it, around 20 years ago. Unique sound and still holding. Great, great band.
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on 19 July 2013
Had been aware of pavement for years but not heard much . Didn't like this at first but it pays to listen to it several times
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on 7 July 2013
Loose, lo-fi and funky, brilliant lyrics and great tunes. Maybe not the most polished Pavement album but easily the best.
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