Mike Schiller: After the Kraftwerkian head fake that was “Viktor Borgia”, Stephen Malkmus has assuaged the fears of his fans in advance of his first(!) solo album with two songs that sound like they were mostly done with traditional four-piece rock ‘n’ roll bands. While “Rushing the Acid Frat” evoked the Beatles at their most LSD-soaked, “Come Get Me” sounds a little like early-period Shins with its herky-jerky vocal melody that Malkmus isn’t afraid to run into the ground, not to mention an arrangement that just barely exists on the good side of modern indie cliché. One gets the impression that Malkmus doesn’t take himself all that seriously, and while there is merit to that, layers of detachment can be hard to poke through when searching for the heart of a song. That heart is undoubtedly in here, somewhere just out of reach, but at least the shell Malkmus wrapped it in is rather groovy. [5/10]
John Garratt: Now that he’s in his 50s, I don’t know if it’s cool to still like Stephen Malkmus or not. I do appreciate the faux-narcissism of the video (if that’s what you call it) and the fact that he’s not trying to hide his grey hair and perfect sweaters. A song like “Come Get Me” wouldn’t have caught many ears back in the Pavement days, but it’s a breath of fresh air for today. [7/10]
Rod Waterman: I am constitutionally allergic to Stephen Malkmus because the riffs are too often borrowed and the jokes are almost always inside ones. It’s as if you have to laugh even if you don’t get it if you want to stay in the cool kids club, and that’s just too much work for me. Add to that the fact that he went to a jam band place at some point in his solo career and he is three strikes and out in my record book. This is apparently from an album called Groove Denied that was too much of a dance album for release at the time it was first made. Well, you could have fooled me. Just sounds like standard sludgy Malkmus guitar stuff as far as I can tell. Plus ça change, plus c’est le Malkmus. [4/10]
Jedd Beaudoin: It’s like he’s been listening to the weird records Paul Westerberg made in his basement during the aughts. After “Bike Lane,” which he recorded with The Jicks, it’s hard to imagine he’d write another song of that stature. This one is good because it’s Malkmus, but it doesn’t make me levitate, despite some pretty cool production turns. [6/10]
Adriane Pontecorvo: The pace of new Stephen Malkmus single “Come Get Me” is a comforting andante. In fact, “comforting” is about as good as it gets throughout the track as Malkmus mumbles his way through a simple pop-rock track that will stay stuck in the head without doing much of anything there. There are good moments; the opening melodic lines are particularly palatable, and the occasional flourish makes “Come Get Me” worth hearing. Something about it sounds dated, though, like it belongs behind an early 2000s indie movie opening montage. I suppose we’re getting to the point where that decade will be fashionably retro again, too… just not in time for “Come Get Me” to sound fresh. [4/10]
William Nesbitt: The gallery of self-portraits is a cool concept and kept me watching, but I wish there were more variation among them. This is a steady, groovy kind of wind down track. It might be a little too flat for me. [5/10]
- Counterbalance No. 124 Pavement's 'Slanted and Enchanted ...
- Gold Soundz: The 20 Essential Pavement Songs - PopMatters
- Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks: Mirror Traffic - PopMatters
- Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks Create Mini Movie for 'Sparkle Hard ...
- Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks: Sparkle Hard (music review ...