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Baker's Dozen

Maximum Drama: Lee Ranaldo's 13 Favourite Albums
Nick Hutchings , November 8th, 2017 10:01

From the peak of CBGB new wave to the group he calls 'the defining band of the 90s', former Sonic Youth man Lee Ranaldo takes Nick Hutchings through the thirteen albums that shaped his life


Pavement - Slanted And Enchanted

For me Pavement were my favourite band of the 90s and they really defined the 90s for me better than Nirvana or any other band, because they were shambolic and had elements of all the things that came right before them like the Sonic Youth era and the grunge period.

Malkmus was such a literary voice and they were such a great band in spite of being everyone living in a different city. They hardly ever rehearsed and their songs were always thrown together in some way but they made this music that inspired me almost more so than anybody else at the time.

I would listen to them and see them live and it really moved me in a very basic sense. I felt it was very sophisticated in spite of it being a little shambling and rambling on stage and maybe that was part of it.

They were never really a tight band. They never cared to be a tight band. On stage things were a little bit messy and blurry and that maybe was part of their charm, it showed that that didn’t matter in a way. What they were getting across was something that was nothing to do with whether they were a tight rock band with heavy riffs or whatever.

Sonic Youth always prided ourselves on being really well rehearsed. We were super rehearsed most of the time and could really kick it out and Pavement was not like that at all. Yet they were really impressive and powerful in this kind of shambling way. I always loved the songs.