JAY REATARD: Singles 06-07: CD/DVD

In The Red’s great comp of Jay’s solo singles—recording after he started playing under just his own name, recording all instruments himself (except for one Alix Brown solo). He first beat a guitar and some pails into a broken 4-track at age fifteen and has now come full circle. Reatards and Lost Sounds fans are split on his solo stuff, which is a lot more mild at times, even acoustic. I love all his stuff. The bands are different from each other—if I want to hear the fuzzzzzz, I can still put a Reatards album on. If you see him live today, the fury is still there. The singles are less furious and more nasal than his Blood Visions album, but are as good. Most of this feels like it could have been for his Wire-style band Angry Angles had they not broke up. As kind as the pop punk parts are, they are still spirited by the fifteen-year-old in his room singing about being a fashion victim. “All Over Again” starts out plucky and sweet but gets dark. “I Know a Place” has some moody piano and woooooo-oooo alongside the powering guitars and drums, but then it gets dark too. “I guess we both got what we asked for…” Each project is different but you can never separate Jay from his music. He is not getting stale in one spot nor turning to a boring imitation of himself. Keeps rock and roll fucking interesting. The DVD is three live performances and an interview that’s short and okay. The performances don’t catch any bloodletting or fights, but the music is incredible; much more hyper and loud than the recordings. Only downer is a lot of songs are repeated over the three. Still, this is a must. 

 –mike (In The Red)