Music Documentary: Pavement – Slow Century

The idea of one band being the ‘defining sound of a generation’ is always a difficult theory to justify. In any given generation there are so many subcultures and tribes with their own soundtrack, and only a handful who would be remembered as having mainstream success. With heavy backing from the college rock scene, Pavement are remembered as the prevailing kings of 90s slacker rock scene, separate from the grunge and noise rock genres who had their own royalty. Although they have always retained a cult following, their 2009 reunion tour seen even their most casual fan reminded of the band’s importance, not only the wealth of bands influenced by them (and some just poorly imitating them).

And why not? Their songs of social disillusionment and confusion ring through worringly clearly in present day while their care free musicianship reacts perfectly against the hyper produced and polished sounds coming from laptops and bedrooms. Although this documentary, co-produced by Lance Bangs, only provides a basic run down of the bands history intercut with tour footage and interviews, it does just enough to reel that casual fan in and leave them rummaging for that mix cd they received from their Pavement loving mate years ago.

Real Estate

Heralded by some as the perfect antidote to the hazy bedroom “Chill-wave” bands who were coming to the fore over the last eighteen months and criticised by others as being too derivative of bands such as Pavement and their contemporaries, Real Estate’s viral success has been a double edged sword to some extent. However the New Jersey four are back with a new slice of their lazy summer day blues. Although I was somewhat underwhelmed at their previous efforts, this new single is winning me over. The finely crafted “Out Of Tune” features beautifully interlaced guitar lines under Martin Courtney’s charming lackadaisical vocals are reminiscent of Grandaddy at their best, proving that the band have much more to offer than may have been first anticipated.

The single is out both digitally and on 7″ on True Panther on the 12th October