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Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks – Pig Lib (2003)

//” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors. Stephen Malkmus – Pig Lib (2003)
– Bitrate = VBR
– Genre = Indie
– Label = Matador Records

The sophomore solo outing from Malkmus is a rather good slice of alternative music. It ain’t Pavement. But not much is!

His second solo album embraces the classic rock ensemble featuring a delectable array of antecedents inform the music herein, from Irish prog-folk greats Mellow Candle to the Jazz inflected musings of Kevin Ayers and Lol Coxhill to some of the more outro moments on Pavements weirdest album, Wowee Zowee.

As an indie paragon since the early ’90s, it’s inevitable that Stephen Malkmus would want to make music that falls closer to traditional rock.

His second solo album is the logical extension of those moments when Pavement cautiously approached the classic-rock canon, albeit from an oblique angle. Initially, it’s hard-going for listeners. Where Malkmus’s self-titled debut accentuated his flirtatious, pop-friendly inclinations, Pig Lib is gnarlier and more expansive.

At times, it’s uncharacteristically earnest, as if Malkmus was trying to defuse those usual jibes of archness with a sustained bout of jamming. Persevere, though, and Pig Lib’s excellence is revealed. The two most obvious influences on spindly, febrile epics like “1% of One” and “Witch Mountain Bridge” are Television and Fairport Convention; Malkmus is particularly proficient at highlighting the affinities between New York art punk and British folk-rock through his notably improved guitar playing.

Less rock-oriented souls, meanwhile, will be heartened by evidence of his continuing Ray Davies fetish on “Vanessa from Queens” and, especially, the “Waterloo Sunset”-styled “Craw Song.” This is an album that, if lived with and nurtured, amply repays the kindness.

-John Mulvey

If you haven’t already heard it, I’m about to tell you about one of the greatest secrets of the 90’s, and that secret is an album called Wowee Zowee. Chances are, if you’re a fan of Malkmus’s at all you’ve heard of Pavement and subsequently heard of Wowee Zowee. If you haven’t, or if you’re one of those people who always listens to the critics, then you have not heard this album. Like every album I’ve ever loved, this one doesn’t taste too good at first. It has an unusual flavor, then you get to that strange aftertaste. It’s on your tongue, and you try everything to get it off. Once it’s gone, you start thinking about it, and you’re hooked. I really liked Slanted, Crooked Rain was really good, but Wowee Zowee killed me. Knocked me on the KEISTER! Right, I said Keister, and I may not have even spelled it right. The following Pavement discs were a little boring with hotspots. The first solo was really good, but this album is a return to that Wowee Zowee feel. It’s as if Malkmus heard me when I said Wowee Zowee never got it’s due as one of the best albums of all time…let’s shake it around shake it around!!!
1 minute intro.

1) Water & a Seat–has those twisty Malkmus lyrics. Great shifts in tempo, great harmonies, and the structure is pure Wowee Zowee.

2) Ramp of Death–probably my 2nd least favorite on the album. not much structure. Failure straight forward. Crooked Rain Crooked Rain fans will enjoy this song more.

3) (Do not Feed The) Oyster–Best Song on the Album. Great structure. Love the refrain.

4) Vanessa from Queens–best lyrics

5) Sheets–It takes all night to get off you. Not exactly the double-entendres we’ve grown used to from Stevie. Seriously, this is a really good song.

6) Animal Midnight–Sacrifice for you is just flirtation.

7) Dark Wave–Swirling heavier song. It’s all right. The refrain catches you and will stick in your head like peanut butter. It’s probably the heaviest song on the first disc.

8) Witch Mountain Bridge–Something else that could’ve come from Crooked Rain, it’s more of that laid back corduroy feel to it.

9) Craw Song–This is another song that makes you feel like you get your money’s worth. There are some songs like these that you get from Malkmus that are distinctly Malmus. Maybe they’re influenced by someone else. Maybe someone else will be influenced by this song, but no one can duplicate these flavors Malkmus brings to songs like these. Incredible!!!

10) 1% of One–Far Too long and Far too instrumental. This is the worst song on the disc. I know I know. Everybody else…

11) Us–Great closure to a nearly perfect album.

12) Dynamic Calories–Everything on this second disc is gold.

13) Fractions and Feelings–This is best on the 2nd disc and perhaps the third best song overall. Man, I’m a Malkmus nerd! I can rank these songs off the top of my head.

14) Old Jerry–One of those softer Malkmus songs for which you have to be in the mood.

15) The Poet and the Witch–Classic ragged Wowee Zowee structure. Hard Soft. Angst ridden Malkmus voice. I love it when he gets into displaying his vocal range on songs like this that dance with the vocals.

16) Shake it Around–Reminds me of the B-side Cherry Area. Both great rockin’ songs. Hard-charging, machismo on fire

By Mud Pyramid “rilaly”


1. Water And A Seat
2. Ramp of Death
3. (Do Not Feed The) Oyster
4. Vanessa From Queens
5. Sheets
6. Animal Midnight
7. Dark Wave
8. Witch Mountain Bridge
9. Craw Song
10. 1% Of One
11. Us

Here be Stevie’s wonder

pass = bitb

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July 31, 2008 Posted by | Music_Alternative, Music_Folk, Stephen Malkmus, _MUSIC | Leave a comment