JEFFREY LEWIS IN EUROPE IN MAY
THEY ARE BACK. And it’s been too long if you ask me. JEFFREY LEWIS has been playing music for ten years now! Time to celebrate with a big nice Europe tour including a Paris date, first since many years.
“[Jeffrey Lewis is] The best lyricist working in the US today.” – Jarvis Cocker (Pulp)
“Hands down my favorite contemporary songwriter” – Ben Gibbard (Death Cab For Cutie)
“Jeffrey is the only artist I’ve sent fan mail to.” – Jens Lekman
“Jeffrey comes out of it all reeking of genius.” – This Is Fake DIY (9 of 10 stars)
“Unabashedly weird, surprisingly wise.” – Mojo (4 of 5 stars)
“…imaginative, contemplative, densely wordy, slightly silly but unflinchingly earnest… the album still ranks right up there among his best.” – All Music (4 of 5 stars)
“Troubadour de la lose, l’Américain continue de faire pleurer de rire et de joie.” Les Inrocks, nos albums de l’année
Jarvis Cocker says Jeffrey Lewis is the finest lyricist of his generation and coming from him that’s quite an accolade. We’re inclined to agree and really it’s quite undeniable when you hear him explain the history of communist China or being sexually assaulted on a train by Will Oldham through song with an ease that makes you forget he’s being limited by rhythm and rhyme. Jeff’s the product of loving beatnik parents who raised him in New York’s Lower East Side in a tenement apartment with no television (it seems they’re on to something there). Before Jeffrey could even read he was crazy about comic books, which is probably why listening to his lo-fi anti folk punk rock feels a lot like reading one.
Nearly all of his songs contain at least one killer lyric that you’ll want to tell people about when you hear it. This writer for instance has explained the storyline of ‘Chelsea Hotel Oral Sex Song’ to every friend and family member. Lewis’s themes may range from bad acid trips to politcal history and oral sex, but there’s an overriding preoccupation that tends towards the life affirming. Relentless positivity usually makes us puke, but how irresistible are lines like, “bad times give you something to talk about/the next time you feel you’re all worn out/remember life is a story, don’t you doubt/it only takes a day for everything to turn around”.
Some of us actually get jealous the first time we’re just about to play someone Jeffrey, because they’re going to get to spend the next few months picking out favourite lines and hanging on every word until a story ends. His songs are so full of self-deprecation, honesty, sadness, humour and truth that he’s nothing less than a gem to be held up and treasured. And in a world where a song that begins with the
line “my life is brilliant” can stay at number one for over a month, we need that more than ever.
Over ten years and six albums with Rough Trade Records (UK):
2001: The Last Time I did Acid, and other favorites
2003: It’s the Ones Who’ve Cracked that the Light Shines Through
2005: City & Eastern Songs
2007: 12 Crass Songs
2009: ‘EM R I
2011: A Turn In the Dream Songs
Additional releases and collaborations:
2011: Jeffrey Lewis & Peter Stampfel – Come On Board
2009: The Bundles (with Kimya Dawson) – K-Records
2002: with Diane Cluck & Kimya Dawson – Antifolk Compilations Vol. 1
May 9 – 14 – Jeffrey Lewis residency at LE 106, Rouen, France during UTOPIA festival. Live show with the band on May 12th. Check venue Jeffrey’s website for details of the other events featuring Jeff.
Mon May 14 : Paris, FR – Point Ephemere (with Ish Marquez)
Tues May 15 : Amsterdam, NL – Paradiso
Wed May 16: Brussels, BE – Les Atelier Claus (w/ Joy As a Toy, and Cha!Selektor)
Thurs May 17: Lille, FR – Venue Aeronef (w/ Louis Aguilar & The Crocodile Tears, and Johan Asherton)
Sat May 19: Lyon, FR – Festival Nuits Sonores
Sun May 20: Bordeaux, FR – El Chincho
Mon May 21: Toulouse, FR – Le Saint Des Seins
Tues May 22: Marseille, FR – La Machine à Coudre
Thu May 24: Lausanne, CH – Le Bourg
Fri May 25: St. Gallen, CH – Palace (with Tu Fawning)
Sat May 26: Ticino, CH – Gwenstival
Sun May 27: Vittorio Veneto, IT – Bianconiglio
Mon May 28: Rome, IT – Locanda Atlantide
Tues May 29: Torino, IT – Spazio211
Wed May 30: Zurich, CH – El Lokal
Thurs May 31: Freiburg, DE – Swamp Bar
Sat June 2 – London, UK – Jeffrey Lewis & The Junkyard play Field Day Festival, in London’s Victoria Park, UK.
Sun June 3 – London, UK – Jeffrey Lewis & The Junkyard play Apple Cart Festival in Victoria Park, London UK (with Billy Bragg, Josie Long, and many more).
Anxiety Attack – Music Video (278,488 listens)
(Chosen by Michel Gondry as one of his favorite youtube videos of 2008)