Friday, 15 May 2009



I bought this on twelve inch from the Time Records stall in the covered market of Clacton-on-Sea.  It sat as a rare righteous release in a bin of dross vinyl.  Obviously I would have preferred on CD but I just wanted some Pavement.  And it’s a track so long that it takes up an entire side of twelve inch vinyl.

Some people I know dismissed this as country rock.  I guess there is where you will find people out on the range.  However beyond the rinky dinky playing, the words of Steve Malkmus sat bitched very much in the now of alternative rock.

This feels like a song about being on tour.  It sounds weary and as a result feels tiring as the desire of the words do not necessarily convince.  Some might say this is actually the yearn of a young man soughting early retirement.  “Range Life” could easily be a Neil Young song.

Of course the song is also best known for its vocal/verbal dismiss of Stone Temple Pilots and Smashing Pumpkins.  Malkmus describes the first band as “elegant bachelors” while stating the second “don’t have no function” concluding “I don’t understand what they mean and I could really give a fuck”.  Somebody had to say it.

Upping the assault “Raft” offers tuneful distortion on the flipside.  The complaint is “stop criticising me” in the knowledge that “I’m on a raft, can’t turn back”.  It’s a laidback titanic which exhibits occasionally lapses in operation as it overdrives off a cliff.  “Coolin’ By Sound” is less stressed mumbling affair that glides and glows in twinkling fashion.  Pavement warmth.

You want it, you got it.

Thesaurus moment: traverse.

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