Photo by Carlos Gonzalez

Photo by Carlos Gonzalez

 

Even though it never quite looked like Stephen Malkmus was enjoying himself, the rest of Pavement and most of the crowd seemed to have a blast walking down “Shady Lane” and all the other memorable songs tonight at Roy Wilkins Auditorium.

I had sort of forgotten how fun a band it was. “Stereo,” “Silence Kit,” “Unfair,” “In the Mouth a Desert” and many more were a blast to have rolling off the lyrical tongue again. The always-odd onstage roaming of percussionist/screamer Bob Nastanovich was as all the more charming a decade later, too. And at least Malkmus was animated between songs, like when he cut off Nastanovich for talking about the day’s NFL games (“You’re ruining our cache with the freak folk”) and when he went on a riff about hummus (“Times have changed: Pavement is gone, but hummus is everywhere.

It was cooler when hummus was exotic”). And as I wrote in the full review, I thought the band sounded pretty great, especially compared to its old standards anyway. I’m curious to hear the opinions of you first-timers – and there were a lot of you, per the poll on stage. Did the band sound too discombobulated for comfort, or did you know they’re not Rush (or Smashing Pumpkins) and enjoyed it anyway?

Cut Your Hair / Spit on a Stranger / Elevate Me Later / Summer Babe / Silence Kit / Starlings of the Slipstream / Kennel District (w/ Scott Kannberg on vocals) / Unfair / Father to a Sister of Thought / Box Elder / Frontwards / Rattled by the Rush / Heckler Spray / In the Mouth a Desert / Perfume-V / Stereo / Grounded / Trigger Cut / Our Singer / Fight This Generation / Range Life / Two States / We Dance / Gold Soundz / Stop Breathin'      ENCORE:  Shady Lane / Conduit for Sale / Here