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Trojan Curfew

Man, is this a good record! To quote my good friend Noah Sussman (quoting John Cage) "writing about music is like dancing about architecture." That said, I will continue by qualifying the above statement, writing about GOOD music is like dancing about architecture. It's really easy to criticize a bad record, but impossible to do great music justice in ink (or meta ink for that matter).

For those of you who do not follow his work, Stephen Malkmus is the lead singer, songwriter, and guitarist for Pavement, probably the best received indie band, ever. Malkmus has an uncanny ability to write and perform consistently great music with unique chord structures and psychedelic jams. Pavement's Slanted and Enchanted is widely considered one of the best recordings of the 90's.

This is Malkmus' first solo outing and the freedom is something he wears well. From the opening track "The Black Book" to the record's denouement with "Deado," this release is filled with catchy and emotive tracks that will delight all Pavement fans. And I must confess I was a little surprised by this record since Terror Twilight (the most recent Pavement cd) was such a disappointment. With the exception of "Major League," the album altogether lacked feeling and left most listeners feeling cold.

As is to be expected, some great guitar work is to be found here, often with subtle sampling and a sharp production, but what stands out on this disk is the song-writing. "Jo Jo's Jacket" and "Church on White" are the stongest tracks in this listener's opinion, but every song on this disk is infectious and catchy. In fact, when Stephen Malkmus is released on February 13, I suspect some snot-rockers will accuse this disk of being too pop.

Well, not this critic. If you aren't afraid of having a lot of fun, check out this great record.

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