I encounter an alarming number of people who don’t listen to Superchunk, yet should theoretically be the biggest Superchunk fans. The Chapel Hill-based band pleases fans of punk, pop, and indie rock. If that’s not appealing, Superchunk is also responsible for Merge Records, home to Neutral Milk Hotel, The Arcade Fire, The Magnetic Fields, and a hundred other amazing bands. What’s not to like?
“I just never gave them the time of day,” said one friend.
“I guess I should like Superchunk, but I never thought about it,” said another.
“The guys who did ‘The Logical Song’?” asked my mom.
I got into Superchunk at the age of 8, after my dad brought home The Jerky Boys Movie OST on cassette from The Wiz. Superchunk actually had a song on the album (“Shallow End”) , which is probably out of print by now. (They also probably hate the song, or at least hated it when I drunkenly shouted it out during a midday free concert they played in Times Square a couple of years back.)
I didn’t go deep into indie rock until 2001, but I somehow always listened to Superchunk since ’95. They’re one of those bands that can’t release a bad album, have amazing side projects, and put on live shows that make me actually enjoy live shows. They’re on their own indie label, play obscure guitars, and just generally kick ass. What’s not to like?
Unfortunately, there’s no good starting point for a curious fan, except for listen to all the goddamn albums, you putz. Since this is kind of a lot to ask for someone who just wants to try listening to a new band, I’ve rounded up the 10 best places to start in Superchunk’s catalog. This week’s mixtape contains 10 singles or songs that could be singles, easy points of entry into the massive Superchunk back catalog. Eventually, I’ll come back to the band and pick out my favorite “deep cuts.” For now, if you’re trying to get into Superchunk, this is where to start. Continue reading