Pavement Could Have Been As Big As Weezer, Say Stephen Malkmus And Spiral Stairs In Separate Interviews

Pavement’s Slanted And Enchanted-era rarities comp The Secret History Vol. 1 is out next week, so the various band members are making the press rounds. As The Washington Post’s David Malitz points out, the indie rock heroes’ latest run through the media circuit has yielded a funny coincidence. In separate interviews this week, founding members Stephen Malkmus and Scott Kannberg (aka Spiral Stairs) both suggested that Pavement could have equaled Rivers Cuomo and company’s success had certain industry machinations gone their way. Malkmus, for instance, told Rolling Stone that Pavement basically laid the groundwork for Weezer’s success:

In a way, it happened anyway, for a band like Weezer, which was a band that had some of the signifiers of Pavement, at least on the outside. I like them. And I think in the wake of Pavement, a band like Weezer could really make sense to a radio programmer or an A&R guy.

Meanwhile, while detailing his love of Terror Twilight single “Major Leagues” to Vulture, Spiral asserted that the track could have been huge had it landed in the midst of the alt-rock era with a big business push. In doing so, he too name-checked Weezer as well as longtime Pavement punching bag Smashing Pumpkins:

I don’t know, I think if that song came out three to four years prior, it could have been as big as Weezer or Smashing Pumpkins. But we didn’t have management; we just got together and jammed, made a record, went on tour, and then went back to our lives because we all lived in different cities and were happy doing what we were doing. Those bands had management and they all wanted to be rock stars. They all came from somewhere and someone told them, “You sound like Nirvana, and you’ll be a rock star.” I’m not saying that they didn’t make good music. They probably did.

Should these comments be interpreted as Pavement throwing some light shade at Weezer? Maybe? Probably? What’s more important is that both guys independently ended up at “We could have been as big as Weezer” — a hilarious sentiment given how hard they tried to sabotage that kind of career path after getting on the radio circa Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain.

Anyhow, stream The Secret History Vol. 1 below.