Originally Posted by Severian
Pavement > Braniac > Guided by Voices.
That's not to say GBV isn't a tremendous band when they're at their best, and I've been a fan for as long as I can remember, but it's been almost as long since I've been pumped about anything other than playing their older, golden era records.
Pavement was, for a time, the best rock band in the world. Slanted & Enchanted and Crooked Rain are more transcendent than Bee Thousand and Alien Lanes. More boundary pushing, for the time. More interesting over the long haul. And way back when, man, Pavement was just the gold standard for indie rock. They didn't stick around long enough to sully their legacy, and that's important. I'm not going to get into the finer points of their latter discography, because not all the points are fine, but Pavement was pretty fearless for a while there, and they called it quits before they could start to really repeat themselves or flush their quality away.
Brainiac had some perfect records, and they also called it a day before shit could get too embarrassing.
Nothing but respect for GBV, but they aren't exactly living up to their legacy, and haven't for some time.
I fell you. GBV's career is inconsistent, and few bands come to mind with more than 20 years of staying power other than Sonic Youth.
The end of Brainiac's run was very tragic. And two out of three full lengths being pretty much perfect is a great track record.