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Sebadoh | Bakesale [Reissue]

Sub Pop (2011)
By GARRET MARTIN  |  June 29, 2011
3.0 3.0 Stars

Sebadoh Bakesale reissue 

Bakesale is now 17, which is pretty much the age you should be when you listen to it. Generally, Lou Barlow's sad-sack lyrics and confused-young-man shtick are most potent to the young and overemotional. But compared to 1996's Harmacy, Barlow's maudlin tendencies are relatively reined in throughout Bakesale's 15 straightforward rockers. "Magnet's Coil" and "Rebound" are still indie-rock apex anthems, but the song that most sticks out to my now-far-older ears is Jason Loewenstein's "Not too Amused." It's a nervy slow-boiler with a subtly creepy undertone to its standard-issue teen angst drama. At the time, Bakesale was a big departure from the band's trademark lo-fi grit. Some old-school Sebadoh fans griped about the departure of Eric Gaffney, whose chaotic blasts offered a skittish counterpoint to Barlow's timid pop songs. True, the band lost much of its character but probably couldn't have made such a consistently good rock album if it had included Gaffney's experimental contributions. This reissue's disc of bonus material channels some of the anarchic spirit of the Gaffney years, but mostly is a forgettable collection of the expected B-sides, demos, and other rarities — including at least two meandering instrumentals and lifeless acoustic versions of album tracks like "Magnet's Coil" and "Rebound" that my roommate paid import-CD prices for in the mid-'90s.
  Topics: CD Reviews , Music, Lou Barlow, Lou Barlow,  More more >
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