Stephen Malkmus

Three albums deep into his post-Pavement solo career, Stephen Malkmus has somewhat abandoned his obscurantist tendencies for Face the Truth. On the opener "Pencil Rot," he pleads "save me from me" amid synth squiggles lifted from the Fiery Furnaces' Blueberry Boat. He speaks of languish somewhere in the nonsensical language of "Freeze the Saints" and turns downright familial for "Mama." He quickly wipes his heart on his sleeve though. By turns wanky, breezy, and prickly (see "No More Shoes"), Malkmus remains calculated even while maintaining his casual air.

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