How much will the Pavement reunion cost?

Posted January 14th, 2009 by Eric Greenwood · 5 Comments

As we noted earlier this week, Pavement might reunite. I’m kind of meh on the news. Pavement is not exactly at the top of my drop-everything-and-run list for reunion pipe-dreams. I was a ho-hum Pavement fan in college, saw them live a few times, and enjoyed a select few of its records. I understand that most Pavement fans are a bit more enthusiastic than I, which is fine. Time has not made my heart grow any fonder, though, especially after witnessing one of Stephen Malkmus’ borderline jam-band marathons sets with the Jicks. So, after reading about Pavement’s varying will-they/won’t they news, I am puzzled by one thing: is a Pavement reunion a big ticket item? Spiral Stairs is quoted as saying that Pavement’s booking agent is waiting for the “right number” for them to play (the fact that the band has a booking agent might be a giveaway about the reunion’s credibility). Even at the peak of its powers, Pavement was a middling draw at best. I saw the band at the beginning, and I saw it near the end- the venue sizes weren’t too dissimilar. Will the Coachella crowd really wet itself over a sloppy Pavement set? I know that hype from blogs and Pitchfork news items have magical fairy dust powers to make small things suddenly huge, but would a booking agent really fork over mounds of cash for Pavement? It’s certainly possible that the band’s legend has grown to a point where a whole new generation of kids are chomping at the bit for a reunion. Maybe, a Pavement reunion is to these hypothetical kids what a Talking Heads reunion would be for me. But I kind of doubt it.

Tags: commentary · gossip

5 responses so far ↓

  • 1 K // Jan 14, 2009 at 3:51 pm

    From my informal polls, they seem to have attracted a lot more fans post-breakup, which might help to pad their numbers at the outdoor festivals of ’09. Though, the variety (unevenness?) in their catalog and fan base might pose significant problems for their set list creation.

    I still listen to Brighten The Corners and Slanted & Enchanted. Both are totally brilliant in completely different ways.

  • 2 Eric Greenwood // Jan 14, 2009 at 3:53 pm

    those are the only two records i like by them.

  • 3 Trey // Jan 19, 2009 at 6:36 pm

    My bet is that they are looking for some very large numbers to play mainstage (probably not as the headliner) at some European events and a couple of large US outdoor events. The money to pay bands at these things is retarded. They were with the same agent most of their career so imagine he’s been fielding calls ever since and knows what the market is like. Their show on the final tour was in Atlanta at the Cotton Club w/ U.S. Maple and frankly I can’t imagine them being able to sustain a long US tour in rooms much larger than that. They would be able to get away with a substantial ticket price increase. I could easily see putting them in the music farm on a $30+ ticket and having no problem selling it out – I wouldn’t want to try and make the jump to a 2000+ seat room.

    By the way, I always thought I was alone in thinking Brighten the Corners was their best work.

  • 4 K // Jan 28, 2009 at 7:08 am

    Just came across a recording from a 1992 show courtesy of Muzzle of Bees.

    http://www.muzzleofbees.com/2009/01/22/pavement-shank-hall-milwaukee-june-13-1992/

  • 5 Mladen // Apr 30, 2010 at 10:48 am

    I started listening to Pavement in 2006. I listen to almost every genre and own over 1000 albums, and still Pavement are my all time favourite.

    I will not go and see them on their upcoming tour.

    Their songs and videos occasionally make me feel wonderful and even sometimes manage to turn all the crap life throws at me into a menial matter.

    I don’t wanna spoil that by going to see what’s now basically a Pavement tribute band.