WOWEE ZOWEE: PAVEMENT Sunday 02 October, 2011

The third Pavement album and the first one I’ll write about. Why did I choose to write about this one first? Probably the opening 45 seconds of Grounded.

Ok, let’s get this out of the way.  You (probably) don’t know me.  We’ve (possibly) never met. Which (presumably) means that you’ve never discussed music with me.  Had you had such a (apparently boring, I’m told) discussion with me then you would know one very important thing about me. I love Pavement. During the course of this series on albums to love all of the Pavement albums will have their own entry.  A little indulgent perhaps but what’s the point of having your own geek portal if you can’t choose the way in which you wish to geek?

A few minutes ago I sat and wondered which of these marvellous albums would be the first to feature on Geek & Spell.  It did not take me long to decide on Wowee Zowee.  I don’t think I could pick any  one particular album above the others.  It’s a bit like being asked to choose the favourite finger on the hand you masturbate with.  You love them all equally but the thumb has that extra little bit of magic (ladies you can amend your choice of digit as you see fit).

With Wowee Zowee the opening forty five seconds of Grounded is, if you will, akin to the magic little extra of my right thumb.  The main body of the song is another lovely slab of pavement but that opening. That opening. That opening is one of my favourite passages of music ever.  I must have listened to just that section hundreds of times (I’m still hoping a clever hip hop producer will work it into a killer beat) and it still makes my spine tingle.

So why should we love this album?  A cursory listen will reveal a fair amount of discordancy, some inscrutable lyrics and a general sense of lethargic anger.  As with any great work though it is not the parts that are important but the whole.

They don’t always get everything right but they are always trying to find those gold sounds and when then do you will often find yourself like a rabbit in the headlights, mesmerised by the wonder of the sound.  For those moments alone you persevere with the misses and eventually you grow to love the not so gold sounds as much as the solid gold ones.

That’s all true except for Grounded. Those forty five seconds are what I want to accompany all the momentous occasions of my life. Maybe you will too.

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