Gearing up for a tour that kicks off next month, singer/guitarist Stephen Malkmus will play his first-ever solo show Thursday at a one-off in New York but fans likely won't hear the lo-fi tunes that made his former band, Pavement, a college-radio staple.
Instead, Malkmus said recently, he'll focus on material from his self-titled debut album due February 13 partly out of respect for his former bandmates and partly because he simply wants to move on.
"It's not so exciting to play those songs anymore," he says. "It's not like they were really great songs, like [the Kinks'] 'You Really Got Me' if I'd written songs like that, I'd want to play them every night."
After Thursday's Bowery Ballroom gig, Malkmus will spend the next few weeks on a European promotional tour before the North American trek kicks off March 8 in Vancouver, British Columbia. At press time, an itinerary was only confirmed through April 7 in Minneapolis, but additional dates are expected, according to a Matador spokesperson.
Malkmus will be joined onstage by backing band the Jicks, comprising musicians from Portland, Oregon, where the frontman lives.
Since forming in Stockton, California, in 1989, Pavement were central to the sweeping indie-rock boom of the early '90s, along with Sebadoh, Guided by Voices and Superchunk. The band's breakthrough album, 1994's sophomore effort Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain, featured the single "Cut Your Hair" (RealAudio excerpt), which became omnipresent at college and alternative radio.
The band's last album together, 1999's Terror Twilight, which featured the single "Spit on a Stranger" (RealAudio excerpt), is considered Malkmus' non-official solo debut in Pavement circles since it was written without the help of the band's usual co-writer, guitarist Scott "Spiral Stairs" Kannberg.
Stephen Malkmus tour dates:
3/8 - Vancouver, BC @ Richards on Richards
3/9 - Seattle, WA @ Graceland
3/10 - Portland, OR @ Berbati's Pan
3/12 - San Francisco, CA @ Fillmore
3/13 - Los Angeles, CA @ El Rey
3/14 - San Diego, CA @ Cane's Bar and Grill
3/15 - Tempe, AZ @ Nita's Hideaway
3/17 - Austin, TX @ Music Hall (South by Southwest)
3/21 - Dallas, TX @ Trees
3/22 - Austin, TX @ Mercury
3/24 - New Orleans, LA @ House of Blues
3/26 - Atlanta, GA @ Echo Lounge
3/27 - Chapel Hill, NC @ Cat's Cradle
3/29 - Philadelphia, PA @ TLA
3/30 - New York, NY @ Irving Plaza
3/31 - Cambridge, MA @ Middle East
4/5 - Detroit, MI @ St. Andy's
4/6 - Chicago, IL @ Metro
4/7 - Minneapolis, MN @ 1st Ave