Feature: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart's Kip Berman

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Kip Berman, frontman of The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, has a way of totally eliminating all of the pretense surrounding the musician/press dynamic, which is a little surprising since his band has been roundly praised by the likes of the The New York Times, Pitchfork, and NME and has largely been a benefactor of that dynamic.

For example: "Oh, they're totally B-sides," Berman told me in reference to the band's tour-exclusive Abandonment Issues 10", a release that we would agree is "selling like hotcakes," had Berman not been more of a waffle guy.

??Our full exchange, where Berman took time out of his busy schedule as designated van driver to graciously expand on topics such the state of the music industry and not getting sued by Paul McCartney for a theoretical t-shirt design that would have featured his likeness, was unfortunately lost somewhere on Tapacall's (a call recording app) servers.

This is a true shame because you can't help but root for the guy after listening to him talk - this is someone who has rightfully earned the accolades heaped on him by the aforementioned publications, but also someone who realizes that a nod from Pitchfork doesn't make him better than anyone else.??

What's even more of a shame is said publications break-up with The Pains of Being Pure at Heart and the relative dismissal of their latest album, Days of Abandon, a record that is easily the bands' most-realized and recalls the sweeping grandeur of 90's classics like The Smashing Pumpkins' Siamese Dream or My Bloody Valentine's Loveless while retaining its own sonic footprint.

The Guardian said it was "sweet, but after a few listens, a little limp" and Pitchfork knocked it as "less thrilling" than its predecessor, 2011's Belong, and charged that it's "bound to come across as a transitional record."

??Like that's a bad thing.

Berman tells me that Days of Abandon was inspired by Elena Ferrante's similarly-named novel, The Days of Abandonment.

That book is dark and desolate, chronicling a woman's decent into self-pity and madness after her husband leaves her for a younger lover, and the inspiration is strange, considering Days of Abandon's jangly light-hearted feel, but Berman attributes it to the transitional dynamic within the band: "abandonment isn't always a bad thing."

??We agree, Kip.

??The Pains of Being Pure at Heart are currently on tour with The New Pornographers and will play two headlining shows in Hamden, CT and Brooklyn, NY.

??11/11 - Omaha, NE - Slowdown?
11/12 - Minneapolis, MN - First Avenue?
11/13 - Milwaukee, WI - Pabst Theatre
?11/14 - Chicago, IL - Riviera Theatre?
11/15 - Cleveland, OH - House of Blues
?11/17 - New York, NY - Manhattan Center Hammerstein Ballroom
?11/18 - Hamden, CT - The Space #HEADLINING SHOW#
?11/19 - Boston, MA - House of Blues?
11/20 - Philadelphia, PA - Union Transfer
?11/21 - Washington DC - 9:30 Club
?11/22 - Washington DC - 9:30 Club
?11/23 - Carrbora, NC - Cat's Cradle
?11/24 - Brooklyn, NY - Glasslands Gallery #HEADLINING SHOW#