Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks are a soothing break from everyday life


"Wig Out at Jagbags" by Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks is a soothing album that's great to chill out to. Credit: Matador

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"Wig Out at Jagbags" by Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks is a soothing album that's great to chill out to. Credit: Matador

“Wig Out at Jagbags” by Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks is a soothing album that’s great to chill out to. Credit: Matador

Take a relaxing journey with Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks through “Wig Out at Jagbags.” This guitar-filled album will have you swaying and singing along in no time.

 Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks is main vocalist Stephen Malkmus’ second band. His first band, Pavement, disbanded in 1999 and almost immediately afterwards, The Jicks were formed. “Wig Out at Jagbags” is the band’s sixth studio album and was recorded in a studio in rural Belgium.

“Wig Out at Jagbags” has a nice mix of upbeat and relaxing songs, making it great to listen to whenever. It would also be nice to listen to while preparing for a big test, or while doing homework.

The album opens with “Planetary Motion,” a song with upbeat instrumentals and calm, soothing vocals, making it an interesting listen. This song does a great job of showing off the band’s playing skills and Malkmus’ vocals, and setting the tone of the rest of the album.

Malkmus acknowledges some of his inspirations for this album in the song “Lariat,” where he sings “we grew up listening to the music from the best decade ever.” He proceeds to list off some of his inspirations  in the song, including The Grateful Dead, Tennyson, and Sun City Girls’ “Torch of the Mystics.”  “Lariat” is one of the more upbeat songs off the album, and it shows you a bit of what Malkmus grew up listening to and is influenced by.

“J Smoov” is one of the more relaxed songs off the album and is placed nicely after a couple of the more upbeat songs, making for a nice change of pace. This song is my favorite off the album, and,  like most of the songs, “J Smoov” is mostly instrumental. This album is very guitar heavy and this song is no exception, but it also features drums and saxophone. All of these put together make for a nice tune, which the vocals lay over perfectly, making for a nice, soothing listen. This song is perfect for those times you just need to relax and slip away from things.

“Surreal Teenagers” closes the album and does a good job of it. This time, unlike “Planetary Motion,” the instrumentals are slower and the vocals are more upbeat, again making for an interesting listen. Malkmus’ voice clashes with the instruments, giving the song a different feel from the rest of the album, where the vocals fit perfectly with the instruments.


I am in love with this CD! ♫ Stephen Malkmus and The Jicks #NowPlaying

— Barb Abney (@BarbAbney) January 24, 2014


 “Houston Hades” is an upbeat, lighthearted song that will make you tap your feet along to the beat. “Houston Hades,” the fourth track, helps set up the feel of the rest of the album, and it will have you singing along by the end.

“Wigout at Jagbags” is overall a relaxing album perfect for days when you just want to chill out. The album is full of wonderful guitar and drums, as well as vocals. Malkmus’ voice lays perfectly over all of the instruments played in this album.  If you want to hear these songs and more, be sure to give them a listen.

What do you think?