Stephen Malkmus Thinks Pavement Recording New Music Would Be "Total Cringe"

"Yeah, not happening"

Photo: Michael Wong

BY Megan LaPierrePublished Nov 8, 2022

Maybe don't harness your hopes, actually. Pavement bandleader Stephen Malkmus isn't too keen on the '90s slacker rock stalwarts writing and recording new music together in the present day — in fact, he says it would be "total cringe."

A new interview with NME sees Malkmus and guitarist Scott Kannberg sit down to discuss their reunion tour and how they feel about the Pavement legacy in 2022. Naturally, the topic of making new music came up, and it sounds like the asphalt is very much dry. 

"It'd be total cringe if we did that," Malkmus replied. "No way. These songs are good, they exist in this present," said of the band's back catalogue, which has recently also gotten new life from anniversary reissues and TikTok.

Malkmus continued, "That's just me, anyone can do what they want. It's your life, choose your adventure. If any band wants to make a new album, they like to do that, that's totally rad. But yeah, not happening."

Kannberg quipped, "We like what we've done," ahead of his bandmate elaborating even further: "We're real without doing that, you know? I understand the impetus to put out a new record — it makes it sound like the band's more legit or something, and not just like a cash-in deal. But it doesn't have to be that way if you just own your songs."

Malkmus added, "And people can see if you're geezers on a cash-in reunion tour or if they're doing it because they're having a blast."

However, one potential spark of promise for new Pavement material remains: the bandleader seems more open to the idea of performing something novel than he does recording it. "It's not like we couldn't play a new song live either; I'm not completely averse to doing that," he offered. "We just don't need it recorded."

Watch the interview in full below.

Decidedly not geezers, Malkmus and the band's Mike Nastanovich recently joined Tim Heidecker and Doug "DJ Douggpound" Lussenhop for a lively game of doubles tennis.

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