Breathnaigh has moved!

You will be automatically redirected to the new address. If that does not occur, visit
and update your bookmarks.


"We Dance"

Pavement - Wowee Zowee, 1995, Matador
Rating: **** out of four
Lyric Grab:
"Maybe we could dance..."

It's probably a little early in the development of this weblog's voice for me to review one of my top ten albums of all time (Wowee Zowee - I'll need to give this my full, non-professional attention sometime) so I'll start with the opening track. Should be mentioned that I'd give pretty much every song on this album four asterisks.

This is not a song for which I can remove myself from my review, so I won't even try. Having heard only "Cut Your Hair", I bought Wowee Zowee as soon as it came out, and like several other albums I bought at the Jersey Shore in 1994-1995 (Weezer's Blue Album, Ciccone Youth's Whitey Album, for some reason... no pattern) I listened to it nonstop in the driveway in my mom's Chrysler Town and Country - I'm that cool.

So this was my first real dose of Pavement, and it was instantly addictive. I guess I figured I'd eventually "get" the lyrics, because at 14 years old, you still think that can happen. In retrospect, as a "kid who liked to read", I was probably Steven Malkmus's ideal lyrical audience - too bowled over by the coolness of the music and the grad-school wordplay to really consider criticizing it. Guess I haven't changed much. Despite my taste (at the time) for no-fi punk rock, it didn't even occur to me that I shouldn't like this acoustic strummer. I was and still am charmed and enjoyably confused by the clever semi-sequiturs (Is the expiration date later than I think? Or is it later than I think right now, and therefore past the expiration date? Hmmm...).

"We Dance" may be the only Pavement song I could consider genuinely romantic - despite the oddball twists and turns of SM's narrative, the arc of the song never goes off the tempting cliff of irony that Pavement would later approach in "Shady Lane". This song is - can I say - sweet?

There's probably too much of me in this one, so just go listen to the song. Oh, and also, it's one of the first songs I learned on guitar, and the Cat Power version is crap.

No comments: