Baker's Dozen

Artists discuss the 13 records that shaped their lives

13. Stephen MalkmusPig Lib

I came to Pavement very late, just after Terror Twilight, so I worked backwards through their catalogue. Then Malkmus released his first solo album, which while amazing is quite poppy and appears to have ambitions to be something of a chart record, if you know what I mean. But it kind of tanked and then Pig Lib came out and it couldn’t have been more different.

It’s kind of like a prog album and it’s a tough old listen for the first four or five goes, spiky and discordant, but once you get it the rewards are endless. It’s not a dumb, head down, chug along record, it’s really complicated with intricate arrangements and such detail. And half of the album is guitar solos but they’re so beautiful and chiming that they are the song. No one makes this kind of record any more and I think people are turned off by him because you can’t get it in 30 seconds. Pig Lib is the sort of record that Noel Gallagher would never give a chance to; it demands something of the listener. 

Stephen Malkmus is my favourite artist in the world who’s still releasing records. I’m so inspired by him, not to emulate him in anyway, but because he seems so constantly creative. Pig Lib would be on any list of mine just in case someone might go and listen to it. I think it’s a really beautiful and obtuse record but once you’re in, you are really in.


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