My Top 1000 Songs #250: Silence Kid

[I've been writing up my Top 1000 songs on a daily basis--you can see them all in descending order by hitting the All My Favorite Songs tag.]

Well, how about that... About 250 days in, and we've made it through 25% of my Top 1000 Songs. Many thanks to the one or two of you stragglers still dropping by to wade through my mishegoss...

Anyway, Pavement. "Silence Kid," the opening track from their 1994 sophomore LP Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain--or perhaps "Silence Kit," as it's also known due to some sloppy handwriting on the back-cover tracklist. Either way, damn, what an opening track! And there was so much riding on it, for me and others seeking salvation in 1990s indie rock. 1992's Slanted & Enchanted was one of a handful of albums that changed my life, yet after that... silence, kids. Ok, there was a magnificent 4-song EP, but in the interim their drummer was pushed out, and a whole lot of waiting; one had to wonder if Slanted was gonna end up like, say, the first Modern Lovers album, a timeless one-and-done triumph.

All it took was a few seconds into the new record to cast aside any concerns. A thunderous bass note and a boldly tentative, haphazard cavalcade of instrumental slashes and thumps, a pre-symphony tuning session from the orchestra pit, before Stephen Malkmus beckons Scott? [Kannberg a.k.a. Spiral Stairs] and the rhythm guitarist lashes into a killer riff. The relief is palpable--yep, this band kicks ass, and they're not going away anytime soon.

Cowbells, all-timer outsider anthem lyrics from Malkmus ("come on now, talk about your family; your sister's cursed, your father's old and damned"), that weirdly disjointed masturbation coda... Just what a soul needed.

At a reunion gig last year:
A fun cover I found on YouTube:


  1. I’m loving working my way through your list. So many great memories being bought back


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