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Manhattan
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Dav
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Joined: 30 Oct 2005
Posts: 2820
Location: Rennes, France

PostPosted: Sat Oct 31, 2015 7:12 pm    Post subject: Manhattan Reply with quote

It's incredible, sounds like nothing i was expecting, i was blow away by the opening tune and it went on and on, all album long. I got no job these days so i have listened to it on spotify, i can't tell about the artwork though.
It's the best LP since City and Eastern song, in my humble opinion.
The production is also really impressive, i'll tell more when i've heard it some more.
I hope the vinyl will still be available when i ll get the money to get it, i'm such a bum, i've missed the LP reissu on the first lp, now the it's the one ... on vinyl, i even missed a couple of Fuffs, too bad santa isn't real. Anyway Manhattan IS my next purchase.
I'm going to listen so more, see you....
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Dav
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Joined: 30 Oct 2005
Posts: 2820
Location: Rennes, France

PostPosted: Sun Nov 01, 2015 10:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like the opening track so much, with the Manhattan street noises.
The album is really coherent as a whole, the songs fits well together and the production makes it a whole.
It's a killer album, i'm sure it will have kick ass review.
I'll translate the french reviews if you guys are interested in what frog eaters are thinking of it.
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granfalloon



Joined: 21 Dec 2007
Posts: 72
Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Sun Nov 01, 2015 6:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I listened to the first song like 5 times but nothing else yet! I don't even know why, but it's very good.
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Dav
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Joined: 30 Oct 2005
Posts: 2820
Location: Rennes, France

PostPosted: Sun Nov 01, 2015 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah it's my favorite so far too, and as i'm not english speaker the song's lyrics are reveiling themself a little bit more each time i listen, usually got most of it at first listen but still discover some things after each listening. I love it.
I love the line about street fighter one and space harrier, made me think about that thing of calling the first something "one", like rambo 1 or alien 1, i don't know if there is a first piece of saga called something 1, except the first star wars that was episode 4 obviously...
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CrackyMcCrackerson



Joined: 26 Dec 2007
Posts: 137
Location: Texas

PostPosted: Mon Nov 02, 2015 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I called 3 record shops in the Dallas area to see if they had it(they don't, wtf) but now it looks like I'll have to order direct from Jeff's website. I really can't wait to hear this record.
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Ian Cockburn



Joined: 10 Mar 2015
Posts: 46

PostPosted: Tue Nov 03, 2015 3:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is what I had to say about the album> I agree it's probably the best since "City and Eastern", though I loved "Turn in the Dream-Songs" too.

Scowling Crackhead Ian
Jeff had lived away from Manhattan for a while. On his return (if this song is to be taken literally) he found that this local character, who he was at school with and who once mugged him, was still around. In fact, Jeff reckons they are the last two “bad kids” of his generation still living in the area, which gives him feelings of tenderness towards this psychopath who doesn't acknowledge his existence. “When will you shake my hand?” he sings with one of his most beautiful melodies (Jeff, not Ian). It's unexpectedly moving.

There is a welcome trend on this album for Jeff to repeat the first verse (maybe with variations) at the end of the song, which emphasizes the main point of the song, and helps out listeners who only started listening to the lyrics halfway through (it happens to the best of us).

Thunderstorm
Odd to start an album with two slow songs, especially as this feels like one of the lesser songs on the album at this point (subject to critical u-turn).

Sad Screaming Man
This is the big song of the album to me. Elements of “Texas”, “Kill the Ghoul” and probably other Lewis classics are repurposed to form a pull-out-all-the-stops masterpiece, with a chorus that has so many separate segments I lose count. Lyrically there's a hint of “Back When I Was Four” as Jeff has a terrifying glimpse of the future. It concerns an old man in Jeff's block who screams in his sleep, which is terrifying in itself, but more so as he becomes fixated on the idea that this old man is nothing less than Jeff himself in the future, having continued to screw up his love life till the end. The coup de grace is Jeff changing his voice at the end to play the part of the old man, confirming his idea: “I am saying this not as a warning but as an acceptance … so accept it … it is already written … it is already happening … you are already here... AAAAAARGH!”

Back To Manhattan
Over 8 minutes, so sit back and relax and enjoy this slow moody hypnotic song in which Jeffrey breaks up with another girlfriend. With three classic songs out of four so far, this album is looking good.

Avenue A, Shanghai Hollywood
Sung by bassist Caitlin Gray which makes a nice change. The lyrics seem to be surrealist non sequiturs, but with some good lines. But I don't think I can make them all out yet.

Outta Town
We already had this, in a very similar version but it was the high point of the jrams album so, cool. Feel-good tune, quadruple rhymes, and humour keep up our spirits.

It Only Takes a Moment
In which Jeff compares his brain to an easy-distracted puppy in an extended metaphor. Agreeable but slight.

Support Tours
It's interesting to hear to mechanisms of how it all works, how Jeffrey makes ends meet. This band has no manager, they book their own tours, arrange their own transport and accommodation, and prepare their own merch. But sometimes, as in any job, you have to make irksome compromises, which I think most people can relate to.

Have a Baby
You get to a certain age and all your friends have a baby and it changes everything, and you realise that all the nerdy things that are so important to you will be rendered irrelevant at a stroke if it happens to you. The lyrics of this are delivered so rapid fire it's hard to catch them all, but it's hilarious.

The Pigeon
This is a brilliant spoken-word parody of Poe's “The Raven”, rendered in the argot of an old Jewish New Yorker, with yiddishisms throughout. I would have left off the musical noodling in the background.

This is definitely one of Jeff’s more successful albums in both sound and content.. I will continue to avidly follow everything he does. Until I throw that bullshit out and have a baby.

(A version of this review appears as part of my Jeffrey Lewis album by album article in the upcoming Ablaze! 11: http://mittenson.com/product/ablaze-11-out-mid-november-2015-pre-order-now-2/)
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christian



Joined: 08 Jun 2015
Posts: 69

PostPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2015 7:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"... like a journalist still asking <<What is antifolk?>>" (from "Avenue A, Shanghai, Hollywood")

This one made me smile, since I once did an e-mail interview with Jeff for a local paper when he played in Luxembourg. I am not a journalist, but one of the questions still was whether he could explain what Antifolk was. I know it's got to be a tiresome question, but I still thought it might be interesting for the readers, since it's a little-known style of music. So this one hit a little too close to home! Very Happy

This was Jeff's answer:

Quote:
It’s kind of
just anybody who ever played at this one tiny little club called Sidewalk. If you played there everybody says you play antifolk, no matter what kind of music you make. Sidewalk has an Open Mic on Monday nights, it’s been going for more than 20 years, and anybody can just walk off the street and sign up and play. It’s how I started playing music in New York, and it’s where other people like Regina Spektor and Adam Green also started. We all get called antifolk
because we played at Sidewalk even though I think we play quite different styles of music. Ironically, I remember meeting Devendra Banhart when he was just starting out playing in New York, in the early 2000s, but he never played the Open Mic at Sidewalk, so nobody ever called him antifolk. If he had played at Sidewalk even one time he probably would have been called antifolk instead of “freak folk” or whatever.


Here is the link to the full interview: http://www.woxx.lu/7537/
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CrackyMcCrackerson



Joined: 26 Dec 2007
Posts: 137
Location: Texas

PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2015 10:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok, so I finally got Manhattan. I ordered it directly from Jeff's webstore so I had to wait for him to get back from tour to to get it. He signed it, which is pretty cool. The art is GREAT. Seriously, it's the best he's ever done for a record. So detailed and funny. I have to wait until I get home from work(where I got it shipped to) to listen to it but out of the few times I have heard it on Spotify, I couldn't be more excited to jam this on my turntable at home and load it onto my iPod. Thanks for this record, Jeff. It is great. I hope you come to Texas soon!
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lauragek



Joined: 26 May 2009
Posts: 115

PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2015 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Finally got it too! I ordered it together with another cd and sent both to a friend, took a while to meet him again and exchange the cd...

It's funny how the catchier songs are in the late middle of the cd! It's perfect as an alarm clock, first some story songs that slowly wake me up, then the catchier songs to dance out of bed, haha!

I think I'll need a while to really understand all the lyrics, but that's half of the fun for me anyways. But if anyone feels like trying to write down some of the songs lyrics... I'd be very happy!
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lauragek



Joined: 26 May 2009
Posts: 115

PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2015 9:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anyone else who was reminded of Misty's Big Adventure while listening to It Only Takes a Moment? The singing really sounds very similar!
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misshelenc



Joined: 23 Nov 2007
Posts: 723
Location: Cardiff, Wales, UK

PostPosted: Sat Dec 19, 2015 5:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can really relate to Jeff and screaming old man. I have been kept awake in a flat many a time [luckily graduated to a bigger quiet place now but when you're a student you do what you need] in one place the guy upstairs had recently divorced and would cry, get drunk and or have a long masturbation session most days. But I also suffer from night terrors, made better by medication, where I will scream, shout out, kick and hit and anything as I dream. You're all lucky you don't have to share a bed with me. I think the old man should have some of my pills it makes it happen less often by far. Worth noting for the future too if anyone on here is concerned about turning into him- there is help out there! X
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CrackyMcCrackerson



Joined: 26 Dec 2007
Posts: 137
Location: Texas

PostPosted: Sun Dec 20, 2015 9:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My wife just left to visit Kansas for the holidays. I fly up there in a few days to join her but right now I am really relating to "Outta Town". The only heartbeats at my apartment are me and my cat. Usually there are two more cats but my wife usually brings them with her for the holidays and this year is no exception. My cat wouldn't do well in the car ride or the in-laws place. I'll be gone a week and a half. Once I leave, my brother will come every other day to check up on her, give a her a little love and make sure she has food and water. I hate leaving her alone for so long.
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misshelenc



Joined: 23 Nov 2007
Posts: 723
Location: Cardiff, Wales, UK

PostPosted: Mon Dec 21, 2015 12:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Outta Town is a lovely idea. It's sweet you can relate. Every other day seems a long time to leave a cat though, make sure she is looked after properly! I hope you have a lovely holiday when you get that far. Give kitty some love and enjoy the time to run your life as you want to without considering anyone else!
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misshelenc



Joined: 23 Nov 2007
Posts: 723
Location: Cardiff, Wales, UK

PostPosted: Mon Dec 28, 2015 12:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can definitely see the title relevance after listening to it, all the songs do seem to fit with it. I have been considering the Outta Town thing since I wrote the above... many years ago I was in a long term relationship with a boy in a band who would often go away on tour and things. I actually used to love to get some space, a chance to clean everything and not have to talk to anyone, just hide at home, read and not have to answer to anyone. So basically the opposite of the song. I enjoyed being a rock widow more than the relationship half the time at least. And I'm almost certain no one would have ever missed me like that, again, I'm more of a relief to get rid of than someone to yearn for!
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CrackyMcCrackerson



Joined: 26 Dec 2007
Posts: 137
Location: Texas

PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2016 4:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can say this record is definitely a grower. Every day since I've gotten it, I get a little sonic nugget caught in my head, I throw it on even if my chronic tinnitus acts up and I just love love love this record.
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