Pavement Is The Best Band Of The 90s And Is Still Cool Today

Pavement Is The Best Band Of The 90s And Is Still Cool Today

No other answer is correct.

Pavement never lacked in their decade-long time together, releasing hit after hit before disbanding in 1999. Regarded as one of the most, if not the most, essential indie bands of all time, Pavement defined the term "indie rock". To learn why exactly this is, one must go back to the early 1990s, when Pavement first began.

In 1992 when their first album "Slanted and Enchanted" was released, it was incredibly fresh. Playful and humorous, Pavement combined lo-fi noise with bizarre lyrics. Furthermore, their playing is rather sloppy and raw, with questionable production. At times, the atonal and off time music makes it seem like Pavement isn't trying at all, or are completely new to their instruments.

This, as well as the lyrics, are actually all on purpose to counterpoint standard rock cliches during those times. The early 90's was a time when both grunge music's serious lyricism and 80's arena-rock style excessive production were huge. Pavement purposely differentiated themselves from both these in their aesthetics and music on "Slanted and Enchanted".

Moving forward, their 1994 sophomore release, "Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain", was a huge stylistic change for Pavement. Ditching the lo-fi sound in favor of more clean production but still keeping some of the raw noise, "Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain" still showed to be a much more varied album overall.

The prototype slacker album, "Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain" is gleaming and distorted. At many times sounding like the entire album is going to fall apart, Pavement leaves the listener never quite knowing just how serious or satirical they're being throughout.

Still, at the height of the grunge movement, "Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain" reinforces Pavement's notion that they were the antithesis of this now an entirely commercial explosion. That they just didn't care; were entirely fed up. And they pulled it off perfectly, with beautiful melodies and sarcastic lyrics.

Pavement went on to drop multiple more solid EP's and LP's after "Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain". These all continued the trend of ditching Slanted and Enchanted"'s lo-fi sound in favor of "Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain"'s more polished and radio-friendly pop sound.

At this point, however, Pavement had already established themselves as the new sound, just as Sonic Youth had done approximately a decade earlier. The mid-1990s also spelled the last hurrah for the grunge explosion, with Pavement riding out the wave until almost 2000 before breaking up.

Throughout it all, Pavement showed just how much they didn't care, how much they don't follow music guidelines until they became the new "cool". The fact that Pavement did this while creating such perfect music that varied throughout their career is no small feat in the commercially dominated world.

It can all be summed up with: grunge music isn't considered very cool today (barring Nirvana), but Pavement is.

Pavement is cool today.

Cover Image Credit: Youtube

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Why High School Musicals Should Be As Respected As Sports Programs Are

The arts are important, too.

When I was in middle school and high school, I felt like I lived for the musicals that my school orchestrated.

For those of you who don't know, a musical is an onstage performance wherein actors take on roles that involve singing, and often dancing, to progress the plot of the story. While it may sound a little bit nerdy to get up in front of an audience to perform in this manner, this is something you cannot knock until you try it.

For some reason, though, many public schools have de-funded arts programs that would allow these musicals to occur, while increasing the funding for sports teams. There are a few things that are being forgotten when sports are valued more than musical programs in high schools.

Much like athletic hobbies, an actor must try-out, or audition, to participate in a musical. Those best suited for each role will be cast, and those who would not fit well are not given a part. While this may sound similar to trying out for say, basketball, it is an apples to oranges comparison.

At a basketball try-out, those who have the most experience doing a lay-up or shooting a foul shot will be more likely to succeed, no questions asked. However, for an audition, it is common to have to learn a piece of choreography upon walking in, and a potential cast member will be required to sing a selected piece with only a few days of preparation.

There are many more variables involved with an audition that makes it that much more nerve-racking.

The cast of a school musical will often rehearse for several months to perfect their roles, with only several nights of performance at the end. Many sports practice for three or four days between each of their respective competitions. While this may seem to make sports more grueling, this is not always the case.

Musicals have very little pay-off for a large amount of effort, while athletic activities have more frequent displays of their efforts.

Athletes are not encouraged to but are allowed to make mistakes. This is simply not allowed for someone in a musical, because certain lines or entrances may be integral to the plot.

Sometimes, because of all the quick changes and the sweat from big dance numbers, the stage makeup just starts to smear. Despite this, an actor must smile through it all. This is the part of musicals that no sport has: introspection.

An actor must think about how he or she would respond in a given situation, be it saddening, maddening, frightening, or delightful. There is no sport that requires the knowledge of human emotion, and there is especially no sport that requires an athlete to mimic such emotion. This type of emotional exercise helps with communications and relationships.

Sports are great, don't get me wrong. I loved playing volleyball, basketball, track, and swimming, but there were no experiences quite like those from a musical. Sports challenge the body with slight amounts of tactic, while musicals require much physical and mental endurance.

The next time you hear someone say that it's “just a musical," just remember that musicals deserve as much respect as sports, since they are just as, if not more demanding.

Cover Image Credit: Cincinnati Arts

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10 Shows To Watch If You're Sick Of 'The Office'

You can only watch it so many times...


"The Office" is a great show, and is super easy to binge watch over and over again! But if you're like me and you're looking for something new to binge, why not give some of these a try? These comedies (or unintentional comedies) are a great way to branch out and watch something new.

1. "New Girl"

A show about a group of friends living in an apartment in a big city? Sound familiar? But seriously, this show is original and fresh, and Nick Miller is an icon.

2. "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend"

Ya'll have been sleeping on this show. It's a musical comedy about a girl that follows her ex boyfriend across the country. I thought it sounded horrible so I put it off for WAY too long, but then I realized how incredible the cast, music, writing, and just EVERYTHING. It really brings important issues to light, and I can't say too much without spoiling it. Rachel Bloom (the creator of the show) is a woman ahead of her time.

3. "Jane the Virgin"

I know... another CW show. But both are so incredible! Jane The Virgin is a tongue-in-cheek comedy and parody of telenovelas. It has so many twists and turns, but somehow you find yourself laughing with the family.

4. "Brooklyn Nine-Nine"


Brooklyn Nine-Nine has been in popular news lately since its cancellation by Fox and sequential pickup by NBC. It's an amazing show about cops in, you guessed it, Brooklyn. Created by the amazing Michael Schur, it's a safe bet that if you loved "The Office" you'll also love his series "Brooklyn Nine-Nine".

5. "The Good Place"

Another series created by the talented Micael Schur, it's safe to say you've probably already heard about this fantasy-comedy series. With a wonderful cast and writing that will keep you on your toes, the show is another safe bet.

6. "Fresh Off The Boat"

Seriously, I don't know why more people don't watch this show. "Fresh Off The Boat" focuses on an Asian family living in Orlando in the mid 90s. Randall Parks plays a character who is the polar opposite of his character in "The Interview" (Yeah, remember that horrifying movie?) and Constance Wu is wonderful as always.

7. "Full House"

Why not go back to the basics? If you're looking for a nostalgic comedy, go back all the way to the early days of Full House. If you're a '98-'00 baby like me, you probably grew up watching the Tanner family on Nick at Night. The entire series is available on Hulu, so if all else fails just watch Uncle Jesse and Rebecca fall in love again or Michelle fall off a horse and somehow lose her memory.

8. "Secret Life of the American Teenager"

Okay, this show is not a comedy, but I have never laughed so hard in my life. It's off Netflix but it's still on Hulu, so you can watch this masterpiece there. Watch the terrible acting and nonsense plot twists drive this show into the ground. Somehow everyone in this school dates each other? And also has a baby? You just have to watch. It might be my favorite show of all time.

9. "Scrubs"

Another old show that is worth watching. If you ignore the last season, Scrubs is a worthwhile medical comedy about doctors in both their personal and medical life. JD and Turk's relationship is one to be jealous of, and one hilarious to watch. Emotional at times, this medical drama is superior to any medical drama that's out now.

10. "Superstore"

I was resistant to watch this one at first, because it looked cheesy. But once I started watching I loved it! The show is a workplace comedy, one you're sure to love if you can relate to working in retail. If you liked the Office, you'll like Superstore!

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