Pavement’s Scott Kannberg discusses the reunion

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As expected, the Pavement show scheduled for September 21st, 2010 at SummerStage sold out immediately. When the band added dates at the same location for the 22nd and 23rd, they also went like hot cakes. As expected. They’ve just added another for September 24th. I quickly bought three tickets and am now in a state of disarray. I almost missed missed my chance!

But don’t fret. The band will apparently tour the world next year, so be sure to catch them if you can’t make the Central Park shows. Nevertheless, it’s still hard to believe this reunion is even happening. Let’s be honest, it’s never been out of the question, but as the years dragged on and the individual members shifted comfortably into their respective careers, we all lost a bit of hope. Now that the tour has been confirmed — seemingly out of the blue — fans are left wondering, “why now?” Thankfully, Pavement’s second guitarist and songwriter Scott “Spiral Stairs” Kannberg recently sat down with Rolling Stone and explained.

Typically for Pavement, the decision to get back together was made in a lackadaisical way. Says Kannberg, “Steve [Malkmus] and I just had a conversation on the phone, and we’d never talked about it before at all. We’ve talked over the years, but the subject never came up. Then our agent asked us about these New York shows, so we went around to everybody in the band, and they said, ‘Yeah, the time is right. If everybody’s ready to do it, then we’ll do it and see what happens.’ There was no real impetus — it just kind of happened naturally.”

“It’s weird how over the last however many years, Pavement’s become a much bigger thing,” Kannberg says. “This whole generation of kids discovered Pavement after we had disbanded, and made us into a huger thing than we ever envisioned. So now I guess we can tour and make those people happy.”

Kannberg says the goal is to keep it fresh. “It’s not gonna be like Echo and the Bunnymen, where they don’t talk to each other, yet they tour every year. I flew in to see them do Ocean Rain at Radio City last year, and it was good, but it wasn’t the same, you know? I don’t think we’ll be that way. We’re not still trying to flog a record or anything. It’ll probably feel like we’re just starting again. It’ll be fun to play these songs.”

I’m part of that generation of kids that discovered Pavement years after they broke up. I was still in college, playing in various bands in which I was either unhappy or simply goofing around. I had an idea of what type of music I wanted to write — I just couldn’t put my finger on it. When I heard Pavement, that all changed. I’ve always loved the pop and country rock of the 60s, the heavy sounds of the 70s, and the grunge of the 90s. Luckily, here was Pavement, combining all those influences. I couldn’t comprehend what I was hearing, but I devoured their catalogue with anticipation and awe. It will be another year until I see them in New York, but I can’t wait to share my experience with everyone here.