Face the Truth

The new Stephen Malkmus record is easily one of my favorites for the year. Admittedly, I'm as much a fanboy for S. Malk as R. Pollard, so something simply phoned in would have sufficed. Even after factoring out that prejudice, Face the Truth still manages to exceed any expectation. It is most certainly Malk's best under his own name, but even more impressively, it's his best since Pavement's passing.

If there's a difference it's that Malk's previous solo efforts only hinted at Pavement's greatness, while Face The Truth taps right into the heart of it. Moving beyond the smug smirking of Stephen Malkmus and Pig Lib, it trades in the same suburban duality last delved into on Terror Twilight. The duality of the suburban thing is this: the impulse to reject what's considered conforming ("Box Elder"/"Pencil Rot") balanced by the urge to retreat to what's comfortable ("Shady Lane"/"Mama").

Such a return to form is not just entertaining but inspiring in the same way that one might forsake their html for handscratch or miss-mash one legendary record with another. It is in this spirit that I have opted not to carry on with an extended assessment of just how awesome this record is and instead offer a list of potential band names pulled directly from the lyrics of Face the Truth should you be so inspired.

"Pencil Rot"

Villian In My Head

Leather McWhip

Save Me From Me


"It Kills"

The Guidance Type

20 Horse Town

Old Dominion

"I've Hardly Been"

A Rock in The Rain

Yoga Olympics

Swollen Subset

The Friendship Etiquette

Quagmire Hearts

"Freeze the Saints"

Divisible Bodies

Vanish in Veneer

Luck is Love

Seasons Change

Zodiac Ballet

Except The Earth and Mountains

Your Willing Dimensions

"Loud Cloud Crew"

From Eternal Grey

Fantastic Times Await

Fieldhouse for the Brain

"No More Shoes"

Iranian Gown

All My Stray Thoughts

Your Contrarian Thaw


Disability Rank

The Dead Ends Meet

The East Nights

"Kindling for the Master"

More Like Heaven

Shot for Meat

Alone With a Crow

Into Water Colors

Plan to Return

"Post Paint Boy"

Revelation Artistry

Penny Rich


Minor Masterpieces

Untrained Eye

"Baby C'mon"

Tiny Terrors

Weekend Shares

Don't Need Highaways

Internal Bitch

The Winter Shell

Too Young For Hell


The Nervous Apprehension

Unstable No More

Your Negative Shadow