captains dead's favorite record of the year: superchunk's majesty shredding

apologies in advance, and 2 through ten will follow over the next week.

nine years is a long time. nine years ago i was living in roscoe village in chicago w/ my wife and dog. life was good, if not great. had a good job, although i hated it, good friends, my money was just that, my money and i/we could come and go as i please. there were no thoughts of moving out of chicago, no atlanta, no mac, no lily, no new orleans, just two people and a dog making their way. like i said, life was lovely, but of course wasnt meant to last forever no matter how hard i tried to hold on to it. what was once my reality, has become a distant yet fond memory. sadly, these memories of merriment/debauchery slip further and further into the back of my brain each passing day. what once was, never will be again.

over the course of the past nine years, there have been two constants: 1. my wife 2. music. this of course isnt about my wife, but about the music. nine years is a long time. a lot of records/bands have come into and out of my life. i am sure there have been a countless number of bands that i have been so psyched about that i would have sworn up and down that they’d be in my life forever, but i couldnt name you one now, or probably a year later for that matter. there will always be those bands that come into the world and light it on fire, but slowly fizzle for whatever reason. shit, check hype or or any music blog, including this one, and the world is rife w said bands. its all about right now. there’s no more personal investment, just a fleeting/hollow enjoyment. this is nothing new of course, but in the age we live in it is so much more prevalent, and, at least to me, so much more infuriating. this is about personal investment…

nine years ago superchunk released here’s to shutting up – a record that was near the top of my favorites of the year. one year passed, then another, then some more, and nothing from mac and the gang. still, i listened to their catalogue over and over again, year after year. so, when it was announced that they were releasing their first record in nine fucking years, majesty shredding, i was more excited than any 36 year old person probably should have been. being ever the pessimist, my giddiness was tempered with a bit of doubt. they’ve been away for so long, theyve changed, ive changed, the world has changed. could they produce a record that would warrant a nine fucking year hiatus? i mean really other than running merge, which i know is a fulltime gig, what have they been up to? for nine years i have been listening to what they had left me with, and i was actually perfectly ok with it. did they need to make another record? an answer from a fanboy like myself was an astounding “hell yeah,” but again their catalogue is strong/perfect enough to last me a lifetime.

first listen, third listen, 28th listen, etc of majesty shredding have yielded the same results: pure personal bliss. admittedly, on first listen i thought my excitement was based purely on nostalgia, and what was, not what is. there i was listening to the first superchunk record released in nine years, but the initial listen was a bit of haze and disorientating. i was feeling like it was the first time i had ever listened to em all the way back in 93, or whatever the hell year it was. i was 19, now 36, but the feelings were the same. they’ve changed, i’ve changed, everything’s changed, but nothings changed. therein lies the beauty of music. the world, your world can make 180 degree turns, but find a band/artist/someone you can lose contact w for nine years and then pick right back up as if only a day has passed is an awesome thing. i realize this is more about me, and not so much about majesty shredding, but let it be known, it is a brilliant piece of work and thus my favorite record of the year.

btw, amazon has majesty shredding for a measly 5.99. you should probably pick it up, or i guess download it.

digging for something

Superchunk – Majesty Shredding by Popfrenzy

6 thoughts on “captains dead's favorite record of the year: superchunk's majesty shredding”

  1. I’ll give this a listen tomorrow, I thought Here’s to Shutting Up was decent, but I was a Superchuck fan way back. I’ve seen them live a few times, but ya, it’s been more than 10 years easily. Looking at the titles, My Gap Feels Weird sounds like a Pollard penned tune. I like your Chicago story, sounds like my, and Mary’s, Austin story. 9 years of music, beer, work and eventually a dog, then another dog…and then kids. 🙂 Now St. Louis, and some live shows here and there, but hey, it’s life. Luckily we have this crazy internet thing now to discover even more music, and great blogs like this one to pursue and find the next thing we can’t be without.

  2. Really nice write-up. I only own “No Pocky…” but this new one sounds great. Gonna go to Amazon & get that cheap download.

    BTW – if you subscribe to the “NPR – Live Concerts From All Songs Considered” podcast, there’s a full recent Superchunk show in there ( amongst other goodies ).

  3. I wasn’t familiar with them until I heard this record a few months ago. I love it. I’m just starting to dig into their back catalog. Reading lots of year-end best-of lists, it’s undeniable how personal and idiosyncratic they are. So thanks for the personal perspective on this album.

  4. I agree very enjoyable and fun review to read. Currently giving the CD it’s sixth spin, this time on random with Indoor Living. Art School and Learned to Surf don’t sound separated by 9 years.

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