Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks "Mirror Traffic"

By Tony Olivero

Top Track: "No One" Bottom Track: "Tune Grief" 4.5 Nancies

Stephen Malkmus has once again released a supply of self-loathing and self-righteous guitar-laced magic with Mirror Traffic. The longest Malkmus album since Pavement’s Wowee Zowee in 1995, he serves up one of the best written and arranged guitar records of the year. Producer Beck Henson's influence is felt during the trumpet bridge that ends the album’s single and highlight "No One." Malkmus decided to go 13 songs deep, enough room for him and Beck. All of the tracks sound like matured Pavement perfection, even if Malkmus is vulnerably singing about the connection between our inhibitions and those of Clinton and Lewinsky. The King of Jicks wouldn’t have it any other way.