Exposé Online banner

David Thomas & Foreigners — Bay City
(Thirsty Ear Thi57085.2, 2000, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2001-12-01

Bay City Cover artStarting with his tenure in the seminal art-punk outfit Pere Ubu, David Thomas has shown himself to be a lyricist of great talent and singer of acquired taste. For this outing he teams up with a trio of Danish musicians. Guitarist Jørgen Teller, clarinetist Per Buhl Acs (also playing guitar), and drummer P.O. Jørgens provide relatively minimal, fairly improvisational accompaniment for thirteen of Thomas’s emotional vocal pieces. There are a couple of real gems here, though nothing really approaching what could be called a “song.” My favorite is probably the bleak “Nobody Lives on the Moon,” with its wall of feedback and interesting drum pattern. “15 Seconds” contains a cryptic reference to “repopulating the American continent with clones.” Not sure what to make of that, but the same song contains this chilling observation: “I feared the worst that worst could be, that everything would be just what it seems to be.” Any of the others, in isolation, is interesting, but the cumulative effect of an entire CD of this music is probably too much for anyone but a dedicated Thomas fan or a lover of improvisation along the lines of Damo Suzuki. I’d recommend for the novice to start with one of Pere Ubu’s classics.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 23, 2000 releases

Related artist(s): David Thomas

Latest news

2018-11-16
The Seventeenth Dream of Dr Sardonicus Festival Tickets Now Available – Fruits de Mer Records and their merry crew of psychedelic explorers are getting set to present the next The Seventeenth Dream of Dr. Sardonicus Festival. The dates are set for August 2-4, 2019 at The Cellar Bar in Cardigan, Wales. They've also announced that the legendary Groundhogs will top the bill. » Read more

2018-11-02
Charles O'Meara (C.W. Vrtacek) RIP – A true musical original has left us. Charles O'Meara, who recorded under the name C.W. Vrtacek, was a wild-card musical talent, ranging from complex progressive rock to introspective modern compositions, with stops at many places inbetween. » Read more

2018-10-17
Eurock Documentary Seeks Funding – We've been fans and fellow travelers with Archie Patterson and his Eurock project on the journey to discover great music. After many years of promoting and trying to spread the word,a new phase is beginning: a documentary film. Things like this don't just happen, and money does not magically appear to make it happen, so it's up to the fans to get it done. » Read more

2018-09-29
Marty Balin RIP – One of the architects of the 60s psychedelic sound of San Francisco has died at the age of 76. Marty Balin was a singer, songwriter, and guitarist who was one of the founders of Jefferson Airplane. After the split of the original Airplane, Balin went on to form the highly successful Jefferson Starship. » Read more

2018-09-25
Help the Psychic Equalizer Avoid Extinction – Last year we reviewed the debut album by Psychic Equalizer, a musical project of Hugo Selles. He's now working on the ambitious follow-up to that release, and is seeking funding from listeners around the world. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Electrum - Frames of Mind – Here are three guys who love Rush and decided to record an album together of songs influenced by the Canadian trio. It's a scenario I've seen played out over and over (see Afterlife in these...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues