The Tenement Year
Produced by Pere Ubu and Paul Hamann.
Mercury Records 9846251
Director's Cut, April 16 2007 cd.
Robert Christgau, Village Voice, 1988
So what's astonishing isn't just the high spirits and good faith, both rare enough on reunions, but the singleness of purpose. Pick Hit: A.
Adam Sweeting, The Guardian, 1988
As if a mountainside had learned to play Mendelssohn... Even when they make no literal sense, Ubu have the alluring and deceptive plasticity of a foreign language.
Edwin Pouncey, New Musical Express, 1988
The Tenement Year is this year's manna from heaven. For the cold initiate about to enter this strange world... hold on and enjoy the ride, you've never heard anything like it. A classic.
Jon Pareles, New York Times, 1988
It's still a band that blithely upends all that's solid and foursquare about rock. At the center of Pere Ubu is a garage band, one that can knock out guitar riffs fit for any frat party... Solid as the band can be, it's also likely to dissolve songs from the bottom up. For all Pere Ubu's uncertainty, the band isn't arbitrary; its music has the off-the-wall unity of a Marx Brothers routine.
Steve Hochman, Rolling Stone, 1988
Who else could not only write a song with lyrics that are just "George had a hat but it wasn't where it wasn't at" but also make it sound like a love poem to humanity.
Links and Background:
A 30 Year Retrospective • FAQ concerning Fontana and the re-issues • Lyrics • The singles
Director's Cut 2007:
Extras on Mercury Re-issue:
David Thomas - vocals, trombone, melodeon, spike
Jim Jones - electric guitars, backing vocals
Allen Ravenstine - EML synthesizers, sax, backing vocals
Tony Maimone - bass guitars, backing vocals
Chris Cutler - drums, percussion, noises off
Scott Krauss - drum kit
John Kirkpatrick played melodeon on Miss You and Busman's Honeymoon.