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Preston School Of Industry

While Stephen Malkmus's bored stoner drawl may have been Pavement's most distinguishing feature, Scott "Spiral Stairs" Kannberg's off-kilter guitar skills and keen songwriting acumen (which provided a less ironic, more anthemic, but still quite warped counter to Malkmus) were crucial to the band's idiosyncratic genius. In the later, less happy years of Pavement, Kannberg became less involved with the band, contributing no songs to the group's swan song, Terror Twilight (leading some to describe the album as a Malkmus solo album). After Pavement's split in 2000, Kannberg let the world know what he'd been up to, in short succession founding a label, Amazing Grease (which has released albums by the likes of Oranger, Carlos, Cole Marquis, and Aaron Nudelman), and forming a new band, Preston School of Industry (named for a school for juvenile offenders near his hometown of Stockton, CA).

In the latter part of 2000 and early 2001, with a supporting crew that included Moore Brothers Andrew Borger (drums) and Jon Erickson (bass), Kannberg began fleshing out some songs he'd written during the Terror Twilight recordings as well as penning a few new ones. The result was All This Sounds Gas, released in the summer of 2001, a collection of lazy mid-fi jangle-pop tunes that fit neatly into the Pavement tradition without the zaniness and sarcasm Malkmus brought to the table. Kannberg tends much more toward the dusty Americana that Pavement only flirted with, making occasional stabs at the solar-powered pop of The Flaming Lips or his Central Valley brethren Grandaddy. The record opens with the laconic, repetitive "Whalebones," followed by the odd "Falling Away," which marries a prototypical Cure guitar line to Kannberg's wistful-yet-cheerful, decidedly Californian vocals.