25th June | Exchange
Given singer/songwriter Jeffrey Lewis’ quick-fire lyrical storytelling, high turnover of albums, frequent collaborations and entire releases full of covers, you might be tempted to compare him to Bob Dylan. But while Bob was singing about thieves, jokers, priests and a whole range of other archetypal characters, Jeffrey was advising us to “shoot the head” if we wanted to “kill the ghoul.” He has also released upwards of thirty albums, but the difference is that these have been in the last twenty years rather than the last fifty, having nearly the same number of comics published during the same period.
In a similar way to acts like The Mountain Goats, he tells very literal and detailed stories, very often with a gloomy, dark humour. In songs like “So What If I Couldn’t Take It Any More,” he points out the benefit of the fact that the rat poison he bought, which he failed to kill himself with, was purchased with a cheque and can therefore be cancelled – had he not died while on the phone to the bank.
This darling of the anti-folk scene has rubbed shoulders with the likes of Super Furry Animals, Frank Black, Jarvis Cocker and The Mouldy Peaches over the years, having also worked directly with Kimya Dawson from the Mouldy Peaches on numerous occasions. He hasn’t, however, produced any original material since 2016 and there have been rumblings that this current tour could be the place to hear some.
See Jeffrey Lewis and Los Bolts play ‘Slogans’ live in session here: