Tag Archives: Pavement

Ep. #165: Bob Nastanovich of Silver Jews

Bob Nastanovich is an American musician who currently lives in Des Moines, Iowa. Though best known for playing keyboards, auxiliary drums, and shouting in the hugely significant and influential rock band Pavement, Nastanovich also co-founded another immensely important band called the Silver Jews. Highlighting the inimitable songwriting and singing of the American poet David Berman, Silver Jews called it a day in 2009 after a remarkable 20-year run. In the past few months, after cryptic social media posts and photographs, there seems to be something stirring in Silver Jews land and the band seems to be active again in some capacity. Here, Bob and I discuss repping Des Moines, dogs and kids, Pavement’s juvenile sound, Stephen Malkmus’ attitude towards reunion tours, how the Pavement reunion tour ended, a failed pitch to get the band going again, the history of Bob, Stephen, and David and the NYC scene of the early 1990s, an infamous Nirvana show that Bob and David disrupted by heckling the band and angering Krist Novoselic, Kim and Thurston’s home phone number, when Kurt Cobain asked Pavement to play the Reading Festival, recording horse racing calls utilizing the same technology as the Silver Jews on their early releases, Drag City might be magic, David’s new obsession with making unique sculptures, the times David has kicked members of Pavement out of the Silver Jews, Harmony Korine and David are close friends now, David is writing new songs and it sounds like he’s going to record them, Cassie Berman and therapy for horses, wi-fi addiction, funny people on the internet, Tanglewood Numbers, when David feels like things are getting too Pavement-y, not talking to David for over a year, why Bob is releasing little tidbits about this new Silver Jews activity, music for sculptures and people, pushing Brian Kotzur, Searching for Berman, the night owl, @silverjews, @dronecoma, @bnastanowich, the song “New Orleans,” and that was all.

Related links: mentholmountains.blogspot.com vishkhanna.com


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Ep. #86: Destroyer

Destroyer is the music-making moniker of Dan Bejar, a very gifted lyricist and musician who originally hails from Vancouver, British Columbia. He has been creating an idiosyncratic kind of pop music as Destroyer for almost 20 years and can also claim membership in bands like the New Pornographers, Swan Lake, and Hello, Blue Roses among others. His latest work as Destroyer includes the lovely 2013 EP Five Spanish Songs and his brilliant ninth LP, Kaputt, which were jointly released by Merge Records and Dead Oceans in 2011. On Friday April 11, Destroyer plays a solo set at the Dublin Street United Church in Guelph, Ontario as part of Kazoo! Fest. Here, Dan and I discuss why, despite living in Spain for a spell, Vancouver remains his home, that year he played SappyFest and first spent time in New Brunswick, why playing small towns is refreshing, how Destroyer has evolved into a ‘heavy touring machine,’ Will Oldham’s interesting tour routes and how Dan envisions a touring pattern of his own, how his solo performance process and execution has evolved, how he and his family moved around a lot when he was growing up and whether or not that impacted his ‘cosmopolitan’ outlook, how bands in the Vancouver scene like Superconductor and Blaise Pascal first drew him to appreciate and play music, what he studied in school and why he dropped out, how Carl Newman’s early work resonated with him, why Vancouver in 1992 was the best irrespective of what else was happening in the Pacific Northwest, Dan’s uncertainty about his band leading skills and his lack of any real aesthetic, the reception to Kaputt compared to previous records he’s made, an update on the Destroyer recording sessions he’s beginning this week and also his two ‘unfamiliar’ contributions to a New Pornographers album due later this year, his interest in enigmas and mysteries, what his ‘words first’ approach to songwriting might say about him, his reservation about engaging with music by younger artists, our mutual adoration of Bill Callahan’s Dream River and Bill Callahan generally, the somewhat unappreciated humour in Destroyer’s songs and how Dan amuses himself as a writer, how this podcast is going to change everything, what material his solo shows have been consisting of as of late, whether or not he might learn to play a Pavement song, my son’s insistence that Bob Dylan and Jim Guthrie wrote a song together called “Colourbook Face,” the Destroyer song “Certain Things You Ought to Know,” and nothing more.

Related links: mergerecords.com/destroyer kazookazoo.ca vishkhanna.com


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Ep. #74: Stephen Malkmus

Stephen Malkmus is the lead singer and songwriter in a great band from Portland, Oregon called the Jicks. Since he dissolved his highly influential and respected band Pavement, Malkmus has led a prolific artistic life, releasing six albums with the Jicks and touring the world extensively over the past 14 years. The latest album by the Jicks is Wig Out at Jagbags, it’s out now via Matador Records, and the band makes Canadian stops in Toronto, Montreal, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, and Victoria in the coming months. Here, Stephen and I discuss the end of snail mail and end times, living in Berlin and pretending to be Canadian, why I might not know anything about geography or culture because I’m a music journalist, our interaction at Sled Island where Stephen suggested I get my toddler a trampoline, my son’s obsession with Pavement and Silver Jews songs, the video for the Jicks song “Gardenia,” and how my son might eventually be into hair metal, how the new Jicks album is translating live, his perception of electric guitar solos and his approach as a player, feeling appreciated for his work, making music that has its own voice, the tension between nostalgia and appreciating history and certain eras, playing and creating things against memories, deflecting people’s perceptions of cynicism, the Pavement reunion and its ‘pure nostalgia,’ what it sounds like when my son and I sing “Stereo” and “Shady Lane” right before bed, and more.

Related links: stephenmalkmus.com matadorrecords.com vishkhanna.com


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