Album: Slanted & Enchanted (Re-issue)
Web: Matador Records
"Lies and betrails. Fruit covered nails. Electricity."
This is quite a massive re-issue, and one of the better ones I might add,
features wise. A large booklet is included with a bunch of stories and pictures detailing
the recording, etc. The two discs included contain the original album, unreleased songs
from the sessions, alternate mixes, two Peel sessions, the Watery, Domestic Ep + its
out-takes, and a live show from London in 1992. Wow, talk about bloated. For the cheap
price it is being sold at, this set serves as the perfect introduction to Pavement, and a
must for die hard fans.
Slanted & Enchanted presents Pavement as a group with a lot of potential. The album
has quite a reputation for being one of the holy grails of indie rock. That's a bit
extreme. There are some absolutely horrid tracks (Chesley's Little Wrists), but there are
a bunch of winners. Summer Babe is a great opener. Zurich Is Stained and Here show off the
sensitive Malkmus. The ladder is one of the best ballads I have ever heard. There is this
unique sense of teenage innocence that this album presents. It gives off a very nostalgic
feeling. I can only imagine how nostalgic the people who bought this disc when it first
came out felt when they heard the re-issue.
Another winner on the album is "In The Mouth A Desert." "Conduit For
Sale!" is crazy. The recording quality is raw, horrible, but DIY to the heart. Read
the special booklet for the interesting details on sessions. One of the out-takes from
S&E, "Nothing Ever Happens" should not have been cut. It is a great tune.
The added bonuses that I mentioned at the start of the review are hit and miss. I haven't
even had a chance to listen to all of them yet, and I bought this album in December or
January. Talk about lazy.
Pavement would take the potential of this record and build on it with the release of
Crooked Rain, which proved to be their true masterpiece. This is a good introduction to
new fans, but it is definitely an acquired taste. Pavement in general is an acquired
taste. However, those who GET Pavement are rewarded greatly. Truly one of the best bands
of the 90's, and while this record is spotty, it was just the beginning.
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