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Perfect Sound Forever: The Story of Pavement


Perfect Sound Forever is an engaging profile of the band Pavement and their quirkily dark, melodic sound and cryptic, mirth-filled lyrics.

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Perfect Sound Forever is an engaging profile of the band Pavement and their quirkily dark, melodic sound and cryptic, mirth-filled lyrics.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Nirvana may have gotten all the hype, but for ardent indie rock fans Pavement will always be remembered as one of the best bands of the 1990s-until, after five albums and a slew of EPs in a decade, the band's leader, deadpan guitarist/vocalist Stephen Malkmus pulled the plug. From Gary Young's garage studio in Stockton, Calif., Pavement was the most unlikely candidate for rock royalty. But a combination of good timing, great songs and an underlying intelligence rare in rock catapulted the band to success at a time when lo-fi and do-it-yourself had become the defining rock ethos. Eschewing typical rock stardom, spurning commercial success and the media, the band left behind a legacy rich in lore but short on facts. True Pavement fans will already know much of the story. But Jovanovic's (Beck: On a Backwards River) effort is still worthy for detailing some murky key points in the band's history, such as the firing of original drummer and engineer Gary Young, the making of its records and the final, dysfunctional interactions of the band and its dissolution by Malkmus. Although not terribly insightful and thoroughly uncritical, the book is still a fond retrospection. Given the paucity of information about the band, this account automatically rises to the summit. The book's quirky design, scattered with pictures and handwritten notes, can be both annoying and appreciated. With a remarkably comprehensive discography, this volume serves as a useful tool for fans unable to keep pace with the band's myriad releases. (June) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Stockton, CA, is not generally thought of as the epicenter of an American rock music scene. However, Stockton can lay claim to birthing its most famous son, Chris Isaak, the critically acclaimed Grant-Lee Phillips, and Pavement, whom no less an authority than the revered Village Voice rock critic Robert Christgau called "the finest band of the 90s." Pavement flirted with commercial success with their 1994 album Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain, but sticking resolutely to their indie record label ethic, they ultimately ended up in the shadow of Nirvana, a band with whom they are frequently compared, until calling it quits in 1999. British music writer Jovanovic, the first to pen Pavement's story, benefits from the participation of all the band members in the form of new interviews and reproductions of memorabilia from their personal archives, which make up over 100 photos and illustrations. Completist Pavement collectors will appreciate the detailed, multinational discography of group and solo recordings. Pavement is not enough of a household name for this book to be purchased by all libraries, but larger pop music collections and those strong in alternative rock would do well to put the Pavement story on their shelves.-Lloyd Jansen, Stockton-San Joaquin Cty. P.L., CA Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781932112078
  • Publisher: Justin, Charles & Co.
  • Publication date: 5/1/2004
  • Pages: 216
  • Sales rank: 1,437,290
  • Product dimensions: 6.88 (w) x 8.96 (h) x 0.61 (d)

Table of Contents

Frontwards--Author's Introduction 11
1 Dizzy Garbled Tone 23
2 Coolin' By Sound 29
3 Got a License to Live 47
4 Secret Knowledge of Backroads 61
5 Two States 87
6 In The Slipstream We Will Stay 109
7 Westie Can Drum 131
8 Success It Never Comes 147
9 Goodnight to the Rock + Roll Era 175
Epilogue: And then... 199
Discography 208
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 21, 2004

    Slanted and Enchanted

    The 1990s officially came to an end with the publication of Rob Jovanovic's Pavement biography Perfect Sound Forever . Among the revelations in this obsessively researched, pitch-perfect history of the slackers from Stockton, California: the story of Stephen Malkmus' first rock concert (Elton John), various explanations for why Best Western was the band's lodging of choice, and the meaning behind Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain's 'Newark Wilder,' which has something to do with Mark Ibold seeing a woman pull a string of pearls from a part of her anatomy. With that in mind, we'll spare you the origins of ' Best Friends Arm.'

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