Monday, January 14, 2013

134 Slanted and Enchanted. Great title.



Album: Slanted and Enchanted
Artist: Pavement
Genre: Rock
Year: 1992

Tracks

  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. Z├╝rich 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

Apparently Pavement saved rock and roll. A lot of people have over the years. Rock and Roll is a bit like a 1940's movie heroine, it requires saving at regular intervals. Pavement managed to rescue Rock from whatever it is people thought was killing it in 1992 by wandering into a garage with a few tunes and some degree of musical competency and helping to create alternative rock. Today something clearly needs to save alternative rock from whatever it's become but back in the early nineties (more than twenty years ago!) Pavement used the genre we call indie rock to save non-indie rock from dark external forces.

Now that this album is 21 years old and Rock has been saved again several times (at least three of them by Jack White) what do we make of Pavement's debut album? Taken entirely out of context and viewed on its own terms is it worth hearing? Does it deserve its accolades or is it over rated when compared with the entire of Rock and not just what was happening in 1992?

Personally I struggle to understand the love for Pavement. I think it's the murk. People seem to love murk. If you read lots of reviews for Slanted and Enchanted you'll find many of them are extremely positive and many mention murk. In fact if you type "Slanted and enchanted" and "murk" into google you will come up with 3, 960 results which is a lot of murk. People discuss melodies and ideas which rise out of the murk and things that surface through the murk. My question is why does there need to be murk in the first place? What does murk add to music? If things need to rise out of it then why does it need to be there for them to rise out of? Couldn't things rise out things that were more pleasant to start with? Why can't melodies rise out of brilliance? Or surface through greatness? Why add murk to the mix? Whats up with this murk lurk?

I don't hate Slanted and Enchanted by any means but it has nothing that I look for in an album and a lot of things that I actively avoid. I'm glad it rose from the murk of early nineties music to save us from whatever was threatening rock that week but years later I don't need to hear it again.

Influenced by: Murk
Influenced: Murky things

Highlight: Here
Lowlight:  Flame Throwa

Favourite Amazon Customer Review Quote: "Goddamn, circa 1993 this album changed my life and those around me. If you haven't heard this album by now, don't even bother buying it."

-That's an odd thing to say. I've never heard anyone praise and album and then try and discourage someone from buying it.

So does the murk work for you or am I berk for going on about it? Let me know below.

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