Mikael and the Ess-Dog

Mikael and the Ess-Dog

In an interview with The Dallas Observer,
indie-rocker and Pavement ex-frontman Stephen Malkmus clears up any
doubt about doing another Pavement album. ‘It’s over.’ Malkmus
says. ‘It’s just like, ‘That’s cool; we did a great job, but no
thanks to another record–like, ever.’ We’ll go on tour again maybe
like in 10 years.’

That’s about as eloquent as Malkmus gets in the interview which
centers on his first album after Pavement’s breakup, an eponymously
titled collection that plays more jaunty than his group efforts. ‘I
tried to zing it up a little bit or something, compared to the last
albums,’ he says.

Malkmus, who paid for the album out-of-pocket, acknowledges it
would sell more if it were a Pavement record, but he claims he’s
‘giving it the college try.’ He moved to Portland from New York
four years ago and is backed on his album by local rockers Joanna
Bolme and John Moen. Although Malkmus, Bolme, and Moen together are
a band called ‘The Jicks,’ the album is entitled ‘Stephen Malkmus’
because the band members figured the record company would use
Malkmus’ name anyway.

Offers Malkmus: ‘I was like, ‘My face is on the cover, and it’s all
about me a bit,’ and they were like, ‘That’s cool; we understand.
Just get us out of Portland.’ And they’ve got their own things
going on, too. They’ve worked with this guy Elliott Smith and
stuff, and he’s even more of a stage hog than me, so I didn’t feel
that bad. At least I let them play on the record.’

A poster boy for disaffected youth in past years, Malkmus seems to
taking a different direction in this album, which bears a cover
photo that is a take-off on posters of seventies heartthrob Shaun
Cassidy. Fitting, perhaps, because Malkmus is the kind of indie
pin-up that Gen-Xers, men and women alike, love to swoon
over.
–Anjula Razdan
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